RNC Tries To Explain Steele’s Afghanistan Comments

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July 2, 2010 6:49 a.m.

We asked Republican National Committee spokesman Doug Heye for comment on RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s remarks that Afghanistan is “a war of Obama’s choosing” that the United States had not actively prosecuted and did not want to be in. He sent us an answer — though it doesn’t quite get at the big issues.

For starters, we asked what Steele meant by these statements, and whether he thinks America should not be in Afghanistan at all? And besides, didn’t the war begin in 2001 under George W. Bush, in response to the 9/11 attacks? Heye sent us this statement:

The Chairman clearly supports our troops but believes that success of the war effort in Afghanistan requires the ongoing support of the American people.

The responsibility for building and maintaining that strategy falls squarely on the shoulders of the President. Like so many Americans, Chairman Steele wants to hear an explanation from President Obama on what his strategy is for winning the war in Afghanistan. The Petraeus hearings were an opportunity – a missed opportunity – to do that. Instead, all we hear from the President is criticism of his predecessor for doing exactly the same thing.

At the same time, Congress must stop playing politics with the war and provide the funding our troops need to win and come home.

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