Student Throws Blood Money at Congress

Blood Money, David Dutrizac / Visual Studies Programme, Univ of Toronto.

CodePink action during war funding vote
June 20, 2008

During the vote on the House floor for money funds for war, Jason Ortiz, 24-year-old university student with CODEPINK , threw $164 bloodied one-dollar bills on to the House floor, representing the $164 billion for war that the House was allocating to continue the war in Iraq. The money, covered with red paint, symbolized the blood money that will guarantee more deaths of our soldiers and Iraqis in a senseless war that is not supported by the American people.

Before entering the gallery, Jason Ortiz stated, “Enough of my friends have sacrificed their futures so that corrupt politicians can profit from their misery. $165 billion more for war? Somehow, our elected officials can’t find money for decent education, or healthcare for children, yet they continue to pump hundreds of billions of our money into their death machine. $165 billion more? That’s enough to provide a college education for every single eligible student. Yet they make college unaffordable so they can force good, honest young people into the military, turning potential scholars into killers.”

He went on to say, “We elected this Congress with a mandate to end the war, and they have done nothing except increase the funding. I simply cannot sit by and allow them to go unchecked. I have seen too many friends come back from Iraq mentally and physically destroyed. I am taking a stand for them, for the future of my generation, and the next generation. I am proud to do my part to show Congress that we are fed up with their lies and are not going to let them off easy. For all of my friends and family, for all the brave soldiers who have sacrificed their lives, for all the innocent Iraqi victims, I say enough is enough. BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW! FUND HUMAN NEEDS, NOT WAR! NO MORE BLOOD MONEY!”

Jason is currently being held in Capitol Police custody, Alicia Forrest and Desiree Fairooz (contact #s listed above) are available for comment as they were in the gallery at the time of the debate, vote and Jason’s subsequent action.

Desiree Fairooz / CodePink

The compromise legislation angered leftist peace activists, who argued that Democrats won control of Congress in the 2006 election with a mandate to pull troops out of Iraq.

“We’re disgusted that behind closed doors, the Democrats and Republicans in Congress have conspired with the White House to keep this war going well into the next administration,” said Medea Benjamin of the anti-war Code Pink group.

“This is a complete betrayal of the American people who voted for a new Congress in 2006,” she said.

Source. / AFP / Yahoo! News

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1 Response to Student Throws Blood Money at Congress

  1. Alex Lotorto says:

    Hey it’s Alex, I was watching CSPAN and the money floated down right in front of the camera angle.

    I called in immediately and told viewers what had happened.

    Great job! I’ll be back in DC soon.

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