House Approves Bill Funding War in Installments

The House has voted to approve a bill to fund the war in Iraq through July. It was a near party-line vote of 221-205. Meanwhile, the Senate continues talks with the White House behind the scenes, and various factions seek a consensus.

In approving the measure to fund the war in Iraq in two installments, the House defied a presidential veto threat. President Bush had vetoed a previous version of the bill.

The bill approved by the House makes $43 billion available immediately for the war, but it makes an additional $53 billion contingent on another vote in July after the president gives House members an Iraq update.

"You would think that the president would embrace this legislation," said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. "It has his benchmarks, it asks for a progress report. Perhaps he thinks there will be no progress so he's afraid of that report."

But Minority Leader John Boehner said the bill would be to blame for no progress.

"This bill is designed to bring failure in Iraq," Boehner said. "Failure in Iraq means chaos in Iraq; it means genocide in Iraq; and it means we're jeopardizing the safety and security of the American people."

The Senate has not yet taken up a revised war-spending bill.

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