Bush: War could cost $75 billion

Americans got a better idea Monday of just how much the war in Iraq is expected to cost.

Reports indicate that President George W. Bush believes the war will cost in the neighborhood of $75 billion.

The announcement has Democratic leaders and Bush critics upset, but not about the actual figure. Last week, Congress passed plans for a budget, including the Bush administration’s tax cuts, but had to vote without the knowledge of exact war costs. A critic cited in a wire report calls the timing of the war cost announcement “awfully suspicious.”

Critics say war costs mixed with tax cuts will be disastrous for an economy already embroiled in deficit spending.

But Bush’s alleged tactic to push through his tax proposal was pre-empted by a move by the Senate. Senators voted to set aside $100 billion of the Bush administration’s more than $700 billion in proposed tax cuts to cover war costs.

Florida Democratic Senator Bob Graham said it would have been “disingenuous, to say the least” to pass a budget without an allowance for the cost of war.

“We stated that funds to support the efforts of our men and women in uniform should come before the president’s tax cuts,” Graham said.