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Administration Takes Issue With Disaster Aid Add-ons

President Bush reiterates his opposition to farm disaster aid funding attached to the war spending bill.

President Bush vetoed the first version of the bill that would provide funding for the Iraq war, and says he doesn't want farm disaster aid spending to be attached to the next bill.

Bush cited a built-in withdrawal plan when he vetoed the first bill Tuesday. That bill included $21 billion added by Congress. Much of that money would go to the Pentagon, veterans and hurricane victims, as well as $3.5 billion for ag disaster aid. While the former three issues are expected to survive, farm disaster aid is one of the funding elements the Administration wants dropped.

"The bill is loaded up with billions of dollars in non emergency spending that has nothing to do with fighting the war on terror," Bush said after vetoing the first bill.

An Associated Press article reports that "billions of dollars for heating subsidies, farmers and wildfire fighting are likely to be dropped when lawmakers draw up a second bill," and says an extension for the Milk Income Loss Contract program - also attached to the first bill - is "attracting particular criticism."

Questions remain as to whether or not Bush would go so far as to veto funds for the troops a second time, but it seems clear that the Administration will not sign on the farm spending without a fight.

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