Washington, D.C. - Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09) made the following statement on the House passage of the Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2009:

“Today, the House passed what should be the final war supplemental spending bill. Among other things, the supplemental provides funds for operations in Iraq, Afghanistan as well as economic and military support for Pakistan. Going forward, spending for military operations will be requested through the President’s annual budget, not emergency supplemental spending requests.

“The supplemental recognizes the daunting challenges in Pakistan and Afghanistan, where violent extremists pose the greatest threat to our national security. The funding moves forward the Presidents comprehensive plan for the region and stakes out the importance of focusing on development and governance as well as security issues. We cannot address our vital national security interests in the region through conventional military tactics alone; we must focus on building stable, effective governments and make serious investments in development. This supplemental recognizes that important distinction.

 “The legislation also requires the President to provide a report to Congress assessing the performance of the Afghan and Pakistani governments based on five political and security benchmarks. Furthermore, this legislation requests a comprehensive plan from the President by October of this year on closing the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay.

 “It also honors the commitment and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform by providing the 170,000 service members who have had their enlistments involuntarily extended since September 11, 2001 with $500 per month for every month they were held under stop-loss orders.
“In general, I was pleased to see that this supplemental spending bill addressed the full spectrum of our national security priorities - investing broadly in development and governance as well as security efforts. I look forward to returning to a more fiscally responsible approach to addressing our military needs and discussing future funding requests as they relate to our overall budget.” cation and are given time to relocate before the home they rent is foreclosed.