Dem Rep. Berkley on Afghanistan: ‘We’re Going to Have to Figure Out Where We’re Going’

By Maya

Dec 16, 2010 4:34pm

ABC News’ Rick Klein reports: The Obama administration’s assessment of its Afghanistan strategy is being greeted with skepticism among Democrats, including many who have been previously supportive of the war. “Knowing my caucus as well as I do, there's going to be a lot of questions and requests to know how they are measuring our success,” Rep. Shelley Berkley, D-Nev., told us on ABC’s “Top Line” today. “I think after nine years in Afghanistan, not only the country, but members of Congress are becoming very weary of — not only being in Afghanistan, but what we're supposed to accomplish and how we're supposed to accomplish it.” “I'd like to know how the administration is measuring this — and as you probably know I've been a big supporter of our operations in Iraq, operations in Afghanistan. I support the troops, support the soldiers, support the veterans, but somewhere soon, we're going to have to figure out where we're going, what is victory, and how we're going to get there and how we're measuring it.” Berkley also said that while there’s “a lot of dismay and anger” among Democrats over the tax deal struck between President Obama and Democrats, it’s critical to keep it intact. “It's safe to say the House took great exception to the way this was structured, and there's — I think this is also residual [from the] election as well. People are not happy on my side of the aisle,” Berkley said. “For my money, I think it's a good piece of legislation for the people I represent and the people of Nevada. We've got, as you know, I've got the highest unemployment rate in the country. One out of five people I represent is unemployed. They've got no work. If I don't vote to extend these unemployment benefits, the people I represent are going to be in a world of hurt.” Though Berkley has previously been critical of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s decision to stay on as Democratic minority leader, she said that’s “no longer a relevant issue” now that Pelosi has been elected by her caucus to continue to serve. “The reality is she is our leader, and I think we need to rally around her and support her because we're going to have a really tough couple of years. And if we start undermining her, now that she's been an elected leader by the entire caucus, then I think all of us are going to be in a world of hurt.” She also vowed to return to “Top Line” if she decides to run for Senate in 2012, a decision she said would come “pretty soon.” “I will indeed if I decide to do that. There's a lot to weigh and measure. And I think I'd be disingenuous if I said I wasn't looking into it and going to make a decision pretty soon.”

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