Reid: President in 'State of Denial' Over Iraq

ByABC News
April 23, 2007, 8:48 AM

April 23, 2007 — -- In Monday remarks, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev, -- who said last week that the war is lost -- delivered harsh language on President Bush's Iraq strategy, following a scheduled presidential statement on the war.

Reid criticized the President for failing to listen to the Iraq Study Group, accusing him of doling out happy talk on progress in Iraq in his speech in Michigan last week.

"The military mission has long since been accomplished. The failure has been political. It has been policy. It has been presidential," Reid said in excerpts of the speech released by his office.

Reid said, "The White House transcript says the President made those remarks in the State of Michigan. I believe he made them in the state of denial."

Per Reid's spokesman, "Senator Reid will speak about the state of the debate over the Iraq supplemental. He will outline the way forward for Congress and the President to come together to fund the troops, change the course in Iraq and bring the war to a responsible end."

"He will also lay out a sharp critique of Bush record and current policy and discuss the impact on US security of staying the course and failing in Iraq."

Reid's office released the following excerpts of the speech:

But just weeks after that [Iraq Study Group] report came out, President Bush ignored the call for bipartisan cooperation.

He went in the opposite direction -- and he went alone -- by ordering his troop surge ­ a plan that ignored the advice of the Iraq Study Group, ignored the will the will of the people, and dismissed the advice of many of his own generals.

Now in the fifth year of President Bush's mismanagement and mistakes, there is no magic formula. But, there is a way forward that gives us our best chance for a responsible end to the war ­ that protects our strategic interests, strengthens our security, and brings our troops home.

That way forward is being forged today in Congress, with the help and advice of Democrats and Republicans, civilian experts and retired generals, as well as the good judgment of the American people, who have made their voices heard loud and clear.

We are at a critical point in the Iraq war and in the Iraq debate here at home. I am proud of the role the Senate and the House are playing in this historic debate. It is a constructive ­ and long overdue ­ effort to put some spine in our policy.