As Many As 10 Republican Senators Consider Defying Trump On War Powers
As many as 10 Republican senators may vote for a resolution that would limit President Trump’s ability to take military action against Iran, according to The Hill.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) is circulating a bipartisan resolution that would direct Trump to remove U.S. forces from any hostilities against Iran within 30 days of its enactment. Increasing support shows the growing GOP frustration over the Trump administration’s justification for the drone strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani.
GOP Sens. Mike Lee (Utah) and Rand Paul (Ky.) have already voiced their support for the measure, and Kaine says about eight more Republicans, including Sens. Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Todd Young (Ind.) and Mitt Romney (Utah), are reviewing it.
Lee said several Republicans are carefully considering whether to back the measure, adding that it “would not be unreasonable to say that there might be a group of 10 who should be considered potential candidates to vote for it.”
Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) plans to force the vote later in the week.
If the resolution passes in the Senate, the House would also need to pass it before it can be sent to the White House, where Trump is expected to veto it.
The Kaine’-sponsored resolution, according to Lee, should be viewed as a “completely noncontroversial measure” that restates the Constitution’s declaration that Congress shall have sole power to declare war.
Lee said it simply spells out that “additional hostilities against Iran need to be authorized by Congress.”
“That is a perfectly unremarkable statement,” Lee added. “The fact that this would be objectionable to anyone in either political party is really saying something.”
Although Iran communicated that it would not seek to further escalate hostilities, Schumer and other Democrats remain weary.
“Iran can strike us in other ways in the months ahead, through cyber warfare, proxies, or established terror networks that have destabilized the Middle East for decades,” Schumer said on Monday, adding that Khamenei warned the retaliatory missile strike was just “one slap.”
“The Senate must not allow the president to proceed unchecked. Sen. Kaine’s war powers resolution is needed now more than ever,” Schumer warned.