Osama bin Laden might be dead, but that doesn't mean the wars are over. Representative John Conyers thinks, though, that it should mean exactly that. Conyers called for President Obama "to end the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq," the Democrat wrote in a statement. "With the death of Osama bin Laden, the Long War that began on 9/11 is finally over. It's time to bring our troops home, refocus our resources, reward the resiliancy of the American people, and rededicate ourselves to rebuilding our nation." Other members of Congress are using the news to push for shifts in public policy in different ways.
So far, no lawmakers have echoed the call made by Conyers, pictured above. But Senator Frank Lautenberg says the location of bin Laden's hideout--30 miles outside Islamabad--"raises serious questions about Pakistan’s commitment to that effort," Politico's Meredith Shiner reports. "The ability of Osama bin Laden to live in a compound so close to Pakistan's capital is astounding--and we need to understand who knew his location, when they knew it, and whether Pakistani officials were helping to protect him." Lautenberg, a Democrat, serves on congressional committees that direct money to foreign operations; Obama asked for $3 billion in aide to Pakistan in his budget for 2012. "Before we send another dime," Lautenberg said, "we need to know whether Pakistan truly stands with us in the fight against terrorism."
Republican Senator Susan Collins also called for there to be more "strings attached" to money sent to Pakistan, saying that the country appears to be playing both sides.
Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid insisted that there would be no changes to the timeline for withdrawing American troops from Afghanistan, The Hill's Daniel Strauss reports. Standing with Senate Armed Services committee chair Carl Levin, Reid told reporters that Obama "has indicated that he's going to stick with [the time table]. I think that's appropriate."
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