US approves $70 billion more for Iraq, Afghanistan

September 27, 2006 07:14

Despite intense partisan divisions over the course of the Iraq war, the US House of Representatives easily approved $70 billion (€55 billion) more for military operations there and in Afghanistan. Lawmakers also adopted a record $448 billion (€353 billion) budget for the Pentagon. With Iraq alone costing about $8 billion (€6.3 billion) a month, another infusion of money will be needed next spring. The House passed the Pentagon appropriations bill by a 394-22 vote Tuesday night, and the Senate is due to act before adjourning this weekend for the fall campaign. The House-Senate compromise bill provides $378 billion (€298 billion) for core Pentagon programs, about a 5 percent increase, though not quite as much as President George W. Bush asked for. The $70 billion (€55 billion) for Iraq and Afghanistan is a down payment on war costs the White House has estimated will hit $110 billion (€86.7 billion) for the budget year beginning Oct. 1.

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