As chairman of the House defense appropriations subcommittee, U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young has always voted to stay the course in Afghanistan.

But not anymore.  

During a meeting with the editorial board of Bay News 9's partner newspaper, the Tampa Bay Times, the Indian Shores Republican said the troops should leave Afghanistan.

"I think we should remove ourselves from Afghanistan as quickly as we can," Young, 81, said during the meeting Monday. "I just think we're killing kids that don't need to die."

The longest serving member of Congress, Young's change in position may carry some weight in Washington.

Young, who has served in Congress since 1970, said he has been a "stay the course" politician since the days of the Vietnam War. But he has also been an advocate for wounded military veterans. He frequently talks of visiting Veterans Administration hospitals to check on their care. He said he came to his new position over the past three months as a result of talking to veterans about what's happening in Afghanistan.