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President Bush accused the Democratic-led Congress of wasting taxpayers‘ time picking fights with the White House instead of resolving disputes over money for U.S. troops and the firings of the U.S. attorneys. He urged them to accept his offer to allow lawmakers to interview his advisers about the dismissal of eight federal prosecutors — but not under oath — and provide documents detailing communications they had about the firings with outside parties.

"Members of Congress now face a choice: whether they will waste time and provoke an unnecessary confrontation, or whether they will join us in working to do the people‘s business," Bush said. "We have many important issues before us. So we need to put partisan politics aside and come together to enact important legislation for the American people."

Democrats said it was time to heed the mandate of their election sweep last November, which gave them control of Congress. Passage marked their most brazen challenge yet to Bush on a war that has killed more than 3,200 troops and lost favor with the American public.

"By choosing to make a political statement and passing a bill they know will never become law, the Democrats in Congress have only delayed the delivery of the vital funds and resources our troops need," Bush said. "The clock is running. The Secretary of Defense has warned that if Congress does not approve the emergency funding for our troops by April 15, our men and women in uniform will face significant disruptions — and so will their families."

Bush said that to get the votes needed to pass the bill, House Democrats included billions of dollars in domestic and pork barrel spending for local congressional districts, including $74 million for peanut storage and $25 million for spinach growers, that has nothing to do with the war.


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