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House GOP leader to make 'prebuttal' on upcoming Obama speech

From Deirdre Walsh, CNN
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Obama is expected to deliver a major address on Iraq on Tuesday
  • John Boehner plans to start his "prebuttal" Friday
  • A senior aide to Boehner says that they are releasing a Web video and an op-ed

(CNN) -- House Republican leader John Boehner on Friday will start to lay out a "prebuttal" to President Barack Obama's upcoming speech on Iraq.

Obama is expected to deliver a major address on Iraq from the Oval Office on Tuesday night.

A senior aide to Boehner said that they are releasing a Web video and an op-ed Friday that argue that the surge of troops in Iraq succeeded despite opposition to Obama and other leading Democrats.

The video gives credit where credit is due -- to the troops and the surge, the aide said.

It also recounts public statements from Obama, Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi, who questioned the surge, the aide said.

Boehner will also have an op-ed in conservative news site Human Events on Friday.

"Then-Sen. Barack Obama, who campaigned on his opposition to the Iraq war, flatly declared that the troop surge would not work," Boehner says in the editorial.

Boehner says that at the time, Obama said: "I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there. In fact, I think it will do the reverse."

The president's speech is at 8 p.m. ET and will last about 15 minutes.

Obama's remarks will also touch on Afghanistan and the broader war against terrorism, the White House said.

The Tuesday speech is timed to coincide with the official end of the U.S. military's combat mission in Iraq.

The total number of U.S. troops in Iraq has now fallen below 50,000 -- the lowest level since the U.S-led invasion in 2003.

The remaining American troops will train, assist and advise the Iraqis.