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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Bush to Request $80Bln More

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. administration plans to announce Tuesday it will request about $80 billion more for this year's costs of fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, congressional aides said.

The request would push the total provided so far for those wars and for U.S. efforts against terrorism elsewhere in the world to more than $280 billion since the first money was provided shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, airliner attacks on New York's World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

That would be nearly half the $613 billion the United States spent for World War I or the $623 billion it expended for the Vietnam War, when the costs of those conflicts are translated into 2005 dollars.

White House officials refused to comment Monday on the war spending package, which will be presented as the United States confronts a new string of violence in Iraq as that country's Jan. 30 elections approach.

The forthcoming request underscored how war spending has clearly exceeded initial White House estimates.

Early on, then-presidential economic adviser Lawrence Lindsey placed Iraq costs at $100 billion to $200 billion, only to see his comments derided by administration colleagues.

House of Representatives Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, said Monday it was Congress' "highest responsibility" to provide the money that troops need. But in a written statement, she said her party would ask questions about U.S. President George W. Bush's policies there.

"What are the goals in Iraq, and how much more money will it cost to achieve them? Why hasn't the president and the Pentagon provided members of Congress a full accounting of previous expenditures?" Pelosi added.

The package will not formally be sent to Congress until after Bush introduces his 2006 budget on Feb. 7, said the aides, who spoke Monday on condition of anonymity.