The Least, First

Monte Asbury's blog

Letter from Rep. Jim Leach

with 3 comments

Jim Leach and Dave Loebsack are in a tight race for the Second District of the U.S. House of Representatives. I’m not sure how it should
turn out – both seem like good and wise people. I have long been attracted by Rep. Leach’s refusal of PAC money, refusal of negative advertising, and overall ethical behavior. He is one of the very few from Iowa – of any party – who, thoughtfully and without rancor, had the presence of mind to vote against the invasion of Iraq from the beginning. My readers from Muslim countries may be surprised to see how hard someone of the President’s own party worked to keep the war from happening, and to prevent the long-term presence of the American military in Iraq.

Here’s a letter I received from him today. Some say, “But he’s a Republican and the Republican majority has to go if Congress is to extricate us from Iraq, care for the poor, etc.” Others say, “If the Democrats win control of the House, independent Republicans will be especially freed up to vote by the issue rather than take a party line.”
You decide.

 

Dear Monte ,

Thank you for contacting my office about the situation in Iraq . I appreciate hearing from you.

It is my belief that the decision to go to war in Iraq was judgmentally flawed and may, in fact, be the greatest foreign-policy blunder in this nation’s history. I voted against the 2002 Iraq war authorization and since then have advocated realistic approaches to winding down our troop presence in Iraq . I have also sought greater accountability in the decisionmaking and contracting processes of our government. Among the resolutions I have supported are:

H.Res. 861 (109 th Congress) – This bill declared that setting an arbitrary date for the withdrawal or redeployment of American Armed Forces from Iraq was not in the national interest of the United States . The House passed this bill on June 16, 2006, by a vote of 256 to153 with 5 voting “present.” I believed that the time to begin a structured withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq was overdue and, therefore, voted no.

H.Res. 116 – Creation of a special committee, modeled after the Truman Commission of World War II, to investigate contracts in Iraq – I introduced this bill in the 108th and 109 th Congresses to create a select committee in the House of Representatives to investigate the awarding and carrying out of government contracts to conduct activities in Afghanistan and Iraq and to fight the war on terrorism. It further directs the committee to make recommendations regarding: (1) bidding, contracting, and auditing standards; (2) oversight procedures; (3) forms of payment and safeguards against money laundering; (4) accountability of contractors and Government procurement officials; (5) penalties for violations and abuses; (6) subcontracting under large comprehensive contracts; (7) inclusion and utilization of small businesses, through subcontracts or otherwise; and (8) such other matters as the select committee deems appropriate. This approach which I initiated continues to gather co-sponsorship.

H.Con.Res. 197 – No permanent military bases in Iraq – Introduced on June 30, 2005, by Representative Barbara Lee, this bill declared it was the U.S. policy not to enter into any base agreement with the government of Iraq that would lead to a permanent U.S. military presence in Iraq . I am a cosponsor of this measure.

H.J.Res. 55 – Homeward Bound – Introduced on June 16, 2005, by Representatives Abercrombie, Jones, Lee, Meehan, Paul and Kucinich this legislation required the President to develop and implement a plan for the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq . I am a cosponsor of this bill and have signed a discharge petition to compel the House to consider the measure on the House Floor.

H.R. 3142 – Iraq Sovereignty Promotion Act – Introduced on June 30, 2005, by Representative Tom Allen, this bill expresses the sense of Congress that the United States supports the Iraqi people’s desire to rebuild Iraq as a fully sovereign, stable and peaceful democratic country, and that it is U.S. policy not to maintain a long-term or permanent military presence in Iraq . I am a cosponsor of this measure.

H.Con.Res. 348 – Iraq Redeployment Bill – Introduced on February 28, 2006, by Representative Mike Thompson, this bill expresses the sense of Congress that: (1) the United States should not maintain a permanent military presence or military bases in Iraq; (2) the United States should not attempt to control the flow of Iraqi oil; and (3) U.S. Armed Forces should be redeployed from Iraq as soon as practicable after the completion of Iraq’s constitution-making process or September 30, 2006. I am a cosponsor of this measure.

In addition, as a senior member of the House International Relations Committee which has jurisdiction over foreign policy decisions, I have voted in support of a variety of “resolutions of inquiry” offered in Committee to compel the Executive Branch to provide certain documents to the House. Specifically, the resolutions would have:

Requested the President of the United States to provide all documents in his possession relating to his October 7, 2002, speech in Cincinnati, Ohio, and his January 28, 2003, State of the Union address in which he discussed alleged attempts by Iraq to procure “yellow cake” for nuclear weapons ( December 8, 2005 — H. Res. 549);

Requested the President of the United States and directing the Secretary of State to provide to the House of Representatives certain documents in their possession relating to the White House Iraq Group. (November 9, 2005 – H. Res. 505);

Requested the President and the Secretary of State to transmit to the House of Representatives all information in the possession of the President and the Secretary of State relating to communication with officials of the United Kingdom between January 1, 2002, and October 16, 2002, relating to the policy of the United States with respect to Iraq ( September 14, 2005 – H. Res. 375);

Requested the President and the Secretary of Defense to transmit to the House of Representatives all documents in the possession of the President and Secretary of Defense relating to communications with officials of the United Kingdom relating to the policy of the United States with respect to Iraq (September 14, 2005 – H. Res. 408);

Directed the Secretary of State to transmit to the House of Representatives documents in the possession of the Secretary of State relating to the disclosure of the identity and employment of Ms. Valerie Plame (September 14, 2005 – H. Res. 419); and

Requested the President and directed the Secretary of State to provide to the House certain documents in their possession relating to the Secretary of State’s trip to Europe in December 2005. This related to allegations of secret prisons in Europe . (February 10, 2006 – H.Res. 642).

I am taking to liberty of enclosing a speech I gave on the House Floor during consideration of H.Res. 861 in June of this year.

Thank you for letting me know of your concern.

Sincerely,


Jim Leach
Member of Congress
Please do not respond to this e-mail by clicking on “Reply”. If you wish to send a comment or share your concerns, please log on to my website http://www.house.gov/leach/ and go to the Feedback Form.

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Written by Monte

November 3, 2006 at 5:15 pm

3 Responses

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  1. Hi sharon,
    I am glad that you liked my blog & you have shown interest into the verses which i wrote. I tell you the meaning of these verses.
    IT means ” It has been written in my hand’s lines that you & me have relation by heart to heart. Every heart beat of mine say that you & me live together”
    I hope you will like this translation.
    Keep in touch & keep visiting
    Imran Khan

    jugnoo

    November 6, 2006 at 1:52 am

  2. Hi Jugnoo,
    What are the verses to the song? I saw the picture of your hand and the words to the song were not in english. I enjoyed your blog comments. I’m glad about your Bro’s job. It is good to get to know you.
    I am a member of Monte’s church. Actually one of his associate pastors.
    Sharon

    sharon

    November 5, 2006 at 9:58 am

  3. Hi Monte,
    i wanted to say thanks to you bcoz you were praying for my bro’s job & finally he got a job in my company at a good post. thanks alot & please keep praying for me also and for the peace in this world. I also mentioned at my blog about my bro’s job & i gave a link for your blog bcoz i was in you prayers.
    have a nice day
    Imran Khan

    jugnoo

    November 4, 2006 at 8:53 am


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