The announcement brought criticism from both Republican and Democrat lawmakers in Washington. Democrat Senator Joseph Biden, a member of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, described the move as a ‘totally gratuitous slap’ that ‘does nothing to protect our security interests and everything to alienate countries we need with us in Iraq’. In another statement, Republican representative Frank Wolf said that instead of blocking foreign involvement in the reconstruction effort, the US administration should ‘redouble efforts to internationalise the rebuilding of Iraq’.