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Obama blames Iraq war for U.S. current economic woes
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09:03, March 21, 2008

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U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama delivered a major speech on Thursday, linking U.S. slipping economy with the ballooning defense budget on the Iraq war.

"How much longer are we going to ask our families and our communities to bear the cost of this war?" the Illinois senator said before a rally in West Virginia.

The U.S. economy, which was dragged by increasing budget deficit, rising oil price and lasting subprime crisis, has overtaken the Iraq war to be the top concern for American voters.

However, the Iraq war remains a focus because it has consumed billions of U.S. dollars and nearly 4,000 U.S. troops' lives but has no end in sight.

"At a time when we're on the brink of recession, when neighborhoods have 'For Sale' signs outside every home, and working families are struggling to keep up with rising costs, ordinary Americans are paying a price for this war," Obama said.

He also seized the opportunity to criticized Republican presumptive presidential nominee John McCain as the one who would persist with President George W. Bush administration's mistake on the Iraq war and tax cuts.

"No matter what the costs, no matter what the consequences, John McCain seems determined to carry out a third Bush-term," Obama said.

Arizona Senator McCain, who is on a trip to the Middle East and Europe this week, dismissed criticism from Obama, insisting the need for the U.S. to stay in Iraq in case al-Qaida militants resurge.

Some U.S. known economists said last week the Iraq war would wind up costing U.S. taxpayers about 3 trillion dollars.

A poll released on Wednesday by CNN showed that 71 percent of Americans blamed the war spending in Iraq for the country's economic woes.


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