House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, is expected to deliver a major speech here Tuesday on Iraq and national security issues. He will address about 10,000 members of the country's largest veterans service organization at the 92nd American Legion National Convention.
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also headline the list of guest speakers addressing the Legionnaires during the three-day event. Actor and economist Ben Stein will serve as master of ceremonies.
In an op-ed published Aug. 27 in Human Events, Boehner said the Aug. 31 shift of U.S. forces from combat to an advisory mission "was made possible by the very surge that President Obama and Vice President Biden opposed.
"With all due respect to them, our troops who have served so courageously in Iraq deserve the credit for the success of the surge and, along with the Iraqi people, the turnaround in Iraq," he said.
Other guest speakers at the Legion's convention include Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley, Sen. Russell Feingold, D-Wis.; Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Wis.; Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Rep. Bob Filner, D-Calif.; and Rep. Steve Buyer, R-Ind.
The convention will be webcast live - gavel to gavel - from 9:30 a.m. EST on Aug. 31 to about 3 p.m. on Sept. 2. To watch the webcast, visit www.legion.org.