Wicker: Senate Democrats Wrong to Block Troop Funding

Miss. Senator Also Comments on Arrival of Pope Francis to the United States

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., is urging Senate Democrats to stop obstructing appropriations legislation to fund the Department of Defense and the nation’s military. Wicker’s comments came during a Senate Republican leadership press conference.

“At the Senate Armed Services Committee, we had the opportunity to hear Gen. David Petraeus give us his assessment of the situation in the Middle East. I think people on both sides of the dais could agree that Gen. Petraeus showed a lot of wisdom when it comes to looking at the situation and deciding what needs to be done going forward. Petraeus said that ISIS is ‘spewing instability and extremism over the region and the rest of the world.’

“At this time, we need to pass the defense appropriation bill and get it on the President’s desk. I do not understand why Senate Democrats would prevent us from taking up a bill that was passed by the Appropriations Committee by a vote of 27-3. I would also point out that President Obama sent a budget request earlier this year asking for $612 billion in defense funding. The Senate appropriations bill gives the President that exact amount. So why are Senate Democrats filibustering an attempt to bring this bill forward? It is something our troops need. We need to pass it.”

Wicker also weighed in on Pope Francis’s visit to Washington. The Pope is scheduled to deliver an address to a joint session of Congress on Thursday, September 24.

“I hope that we can show a little more decorum to the Pope than we sometimes do at the State of the Union addresses. It is our hope that we can avoid the dueling ovations – the jack-in-the box standing for this and for that. Listen to one of the most famous and one of the most respected voices on the face of the earth with the respect and decorum that is due someone in his position.”