House approves measure limiting Trump’s authority to take further military action against Iran

President Trump addresses the nation Wednesday about his administration’s standoff with Iran. (Alex Brandon/AP)

By Karoun Demirjian 
Jan. 9, 2020

BREAKING: House approves measure limiting Trump’s authority to take further military action against Iran

The resolution was put forward by House Democrats amid continued fallout from President Trump’s order to kill a senior Iranian general. A similar resolution is expected to come up for a vote in the Senate as soon as next week.

(This breaking story will be updated. )

The House is poised to pass a war powers resolution ordering President Trump to withdraw forces engaged in hostilities with Iran, sending the administration a message of disapproval largely along party lines but one that, ultimately, is unlikely to restrain the administration’s military activities.

The resolution by Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), which Democrats unveiled late Wednesday, instructs Trump “to terminate the use of United States Armed Forces to engage in hostilities in or against Iran or any part of its government or military,” unless Congress has made a declaration of war or there is “an imminent armed attack upon the United States.” It comes a day after the administration’s senior national security officials briefed Congress on the intelligence that informed Trump’s order to kill a top Iranian general, Qasem Soleimani.

Cracks emerge among Republicans over Trump’s handling of Iran crisis

The House resolution is expected to gain the support of Democrats and possibly a handful of Republicans, despite protests from the broader GOP and its leaders that Congress has no basis to check the president for taking out a known terrorist, especially when the conflict with Iran appears to be de-escalating.

Speaking to reporters Thursday morning, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) argued that Trump’s order to kill Soleimani was not about “promoting peace, but an escalation” — even if the general, whom U.S. military officials have linked to hundreds of American military fatalities during the Iraq War, was a reprehensible figure.

House Democrats chose to state their disapproval through a type of resolution that, procedurally, cannot be sent to the president’s desk to attempt to force his hand. To do that, congressional Democrats will need to rally enough votes around a similar resolution from Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), which is expected to come up for a vote in the Senate as soon as next week. If that measure were to pass the Senate, it can then go to the House.

It is not yet clear that Kaine’s resolution will have the votes to pass. Even if the measure gets through both chambers of Congress, Trump would probably veto it.

Administration officials have insisted the president had legal authority to kill Soleimani, basing their argument on an authorization for use of military force (AUMF) that Congress passed in 2002 to facilitate the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the president’s inherent constitutional right to self-defense of American troops.

Missile strike on U.S. targets ‘did not intend to kill,’ says Iranian commander

But congressional Republicans and Democrats have broken over whether Trump’s operation was inspired and justified, or illegal and reckless, with the dispute coming down to whether Soleimani posed such an imminent threat to warrant going after him without the consent of Congress.

Only a handful of Republicans have publicly objected to the administration’s end-run around Congress and continued effort to withhold information about the operation. Thus far in the Senate, only Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) have announced their intention to back a war powers resolution, doing so in heated fashion after emerging from Wednesday’s briefing — which Lee called “insulting” and “lame.”

“They were asked repeatedly what, if anything, would trigger the need for the administration to come back to Congress for a declaration of war or an authorization for use of military force. . . . They struggled to identify anything,” Lee told reporters Wednesday, visibly agitated. “They had to leave after 75 minutes while they’re in the process of telling us we need to be good little boys and girls, and run along and not debate this in public. I find that absolutely insane. I think it’s unacceptable.”

Lee, Paul and several Democrats complained that the administration had been less than forthcoming with sharing the intelligence behind the administration’s decision to pursue the strike on Soleimani. On Thursday morning, Vice President Pence said on NBC News that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, CIA Director Gina Haspel and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley could not share too much intelligence with Congress during Wednesday’s closed-door briefings because that would have risked divulging sources and methods.

Several Republicans defended Pence’s stance, such as Sen. John Neely Kennedy (R-La.), who said Thursday that “this Congress leaks like the Titanic, and most of the time it’s for political reasons.”

 “That’s why many of these briefings are not sometimes as beneficial as they could be — it’s not the briefers’ fault. They’re scared it’s going to leak,” Kennedy continued, adding that in his opinion, Wednesday’s briefing “was very specific.”

Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) also argued that the administration had provided lawmakers all the information they needed.

“In terms of where there is an imminent threat, General Milley was compelling and chilling about what was going to happen and what had happened,” he said. “I think a third-grader could have believed there was an imminent threat coming from the man that we killed.”

Democrats, however, shared in Lee’s frustration that the administration was withholding information from Congress potentially vital to making a conclusion about whether the strike was justified.

“Accountability to Congress by the administration in matters of war and peace is a foundational principle of our Constitution,” Sen. Christopher A. Coons (D-Del.) told reporters Thursday morning. “It is critical that the administration and Congress trust each other to act in the best interest of the United States, and that includes sharing classified intelligence because we’re all trying to make sure we’re keeping the American people safe.”

Leave a Reply

Please Support The Montserrat Reporter

This is bottom line for us! Unless we receive your support, our effort will not be able to continue. Whatever and however you can, please support The Montserrat Reporter in whatever amount you can (and whatever frequency) – and it only takes a minute.
Thank you

TMR print pages

Flow Xmas Handset Offer-Prepaid ZTE LITE 7-day

Know about your Land Transactions

Newsletter

Archives

Bank of Montserrat – Scholarship Offer

FLOW - Back to School

https://www.themontserratreporter.com/mni-back-to-school/
https://indd.adobe.com/embed/2b4deb22-cf03-4509-9bbd-938c7e8ecc7d
President Trump addresses the nation Wednesday about his administration’s standoff with Iran. (Alex Brandon/AP)

By Karoun Demirjian 
Jan. 9, 2020

BREAKING: House approves measure limiting Trump’s authority to take further military action against Iran

The resolution was put forward by House Democrats amid continued fallout from President Trump’s order to kill a senior Iranian general. A similar resolution is expected to come up for a vote in the Senate as soon as next week.

Insert Ads Here

(This breaking story will be updated. )

The House is poised to pass a war powers resolution ordering President Trump to withdraw forces engaged in hostilities with Iran, sending the administration a message of disapproval largely along party lines but one that, ultimately, is unlikely to restrain the administration’s military activities.

The resolution by Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), which Democrats unveiled late Wednesday, instructs Trump “to terminate the use of United States Armed Forces to engage in hostilities in or against Iran or any part of its government or military,” unless Congress has made a declaration of war or there is “an imminent armed attack upon the United States.” It comes a day after the administration’s senior national security officials briefed Congress on the intelligence that informed Trump’s order to kill a top Iranian general, Qasem Soleimani.

Cracks emerge among Republicans over Trump’s handling of Iran crisis

The House resolution is expected to gain the support of Democrats and possibly a handful of Republicans, despite protests from the broader GOP and its leaders that Congress has no basis to check the president for taking out a known terrorist, especially when the conflict with Iran appears to be de-escalating.

Speaking to reporters Thursday morning, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) argued that Trump’s order to kill Soleimani was not about “promoting peace, but an escalation” — even if the general, whom U.S. military officials have linked to hundreds of American military fatalities during the Iraq War, was a reprehensible figure.

House Democrats chose to state their disapproval through a type of resolution that, procedurally, cannot be sent to the president’s desk to attempt to force his hand. To do that, congressional Democrats will need to rally enough votes around a similar resolution from Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), which is expected to come up for a vote in the Senate as soon as next week. If that measure were to pass the Senate, it can then go to the House.

It is not yet clear that Kaine’s resolution will have the votes to pass. Even if the measure gets through both chambers of Congress, Trump would probably veto it.

Administration officials have insisted the president had legal authority to kill Soleimani, basing their argument on an authorization for use of military force (AUMF) that Congress passed in 2002 to facilitate the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the president’s inherent constitutional right to self-defense of American troops.

Missile strike on U.S. targets ‘did not intend to kill,’ says Iranian commander

But congressional Republicans and Democrats have broken over whether Trump’s operation was inspired and justified, or illegal and reckless, with the dispute coming down to whether Soleimani posed such an imminent threat to warrant going after him without the consent of Congress.

Only a handful of Republicans have publicly objected to the administration’s end-run around Congress and continued effort to withhold information about the operation. Thus far in the Senate, only Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) have announced their intention to back a war powers resolution, doing so in heated fashion after emerging from Wednesday’s briefing — which Lee called “insulting” and “lame.”

“They were asked repeatedly what, if anything, would trigger the need for the administration to come back to Congress for a declaration of war or an authorization for use of military force. . . . They struggled to identify anything,” Lee told reporters Wednesday, visibly agitated. “They had to leave after 75 minutes while they’re in the process of telling us we need to be good little boys and girls, and run along and not debate this in public. I find that absolutely insane. I think it’s unacceptable.”

Lee, Paul and several Democrats complained that the administration had been less than forthcoming with sharing the intelligence behind the administration’s decision to pursue the strike on Soleimani. On Thursday morning, Vice President Pence said on NBC News that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, CIA Director Gina Haspel and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley could not share too much intelligence with Congress during Wednesday’s closed-door briefings because that would have risked divulging sources and methods.

Several Republicans defended Pence’s stance, such as Sen. John Neely Kennedy (R-La.), who said Thursday that “this Congress leaks like the Titanic, and most of the time it’s for political reasons.”

 “That’s why many of these briefings are not sometimes as beneficial as they could be — it’s not the briefers’ fault. They’re scared it’s going to leak,” Kennedy continued, adding that in his opinion, Wednesday’s briefing “was very specific.”

Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) also argued that the administration had provided lawmakers all the information they needed.

“In terms of where there is an imminent threat, General Milley was compelling and chilling about what was going to happen and what had happened,” he said. “I think a third-grader could have believed there was an imminent threat coming from the man that we killed.”

Democrats, however, shared in Lee’s frustration that the administration was withholding information from Congress potentially vital to making a conclusion about whether the strike was justified.

“Accountability to Congress by the administration in matters of war and peace is a foundational principle of our Constitution,” Sen. Christopher A. Coons (D-Del.) told reporters Thursday morning. “It is critical that the administration and Congress trust each other to act in the best interest of the United States, and that includes sharing classified intelligence because we’re all trying to make sure we’re keeping the American people safe.”