Arkansas Delegation Sees Rumsfeld Resignation as Positive

NOVEMBER 9, 2006 - Posted at 7:53 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Members of Arkansas' congressional delegation say the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld will allow American the chance to change the direction of the war in Iraq.

Rumsfeld stepped down as defense secretary after the midterm elections in which opposition to the war contributed to heavy Republican losses.  President Bush plans to nominate Robert Gates, a former CIA director, to replace Rumsfeld.

Representatives Marion Berry and Mike Ross, both Democrats from Arkansas, say the resignation indicate the elections had a significant effect on the administration.

Berry called for Rumsfeld's resignation, and says Rumsfeld had "an inability to face reality."  Berry says he hopes other military personnel at the Pentagon will have more input on what happens in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Ross says he wants leadership that could bring "responsibility and accountability to the Iraqi government."  He says Congress needs to give the new appointee a chance to work with the administration to write a plan on Iraq.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)