Senate poised to pass resolution to curb Trump's war authority on Iran

Senate poised to pass resolution to curb Trump's war authority on Iran”

The US Senate has advanced a war powers resolution to limit the ability of a US president to send military assets into harm's way without congressional authorization, a nod at preventing President Donald Trump from escalating the ongoing conflict in the Middle East, particularly in Iran.

Despite that, the resolution, chiefly authored by Democratic Sen. So it isn't hard to imagine a scenario in which Trump sent American forces into action without congressional approval - claiming an imminent attack, but offering no proof - then dared the House and Senate to do something about it.

The Senate could vote on the measure Thursday, with the possibility that five Republican lawmakers will join the minority bloc of 47 Democrats in the 100-member chamber to approve the non-binding resolution. However, it will require a 67-vote supermajority to override Trump's veto. The attack caused traumatic brain injuries in at least 64 US soldiers, the Pentagon said. Trump ordered the attack on Soleimani - who headed the global Quds Force of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) - having declared him the "number one terrorist" in the world. "We are doing very well with Iran and this is not the time to show weakness".

In a speech on the Senate floor, the Kentucky Republican called the measure "blunt and clumsy", and claimed that if passed, the resolution "would tie our own hands".

"This discrete and limited exercise of American power pales in comparison to the ways in which past presidents of both parties have routinely used presidential authorities to utilize our military might without prior consent of Congress", he continued. "Don't let it happen!" he said. He ordered the strike on Soleimani without informing congressional leaders, and by the time the dust had cleared, Soleimani was dead and the the precipice of a wider war with Iran - until cooler heads prevailed. At Republicans' request, he removed initial language that targeted Trump in favor of a generalized statement declaring that Congress has the sole power to declare war. The resolution is not, however, expected to get enough votes to overturn a likely veto by Trump.

"Over the past decade, regrettably Congress has too often abdicated its constitutional responsibility on authorizing the sustained use of military force. Let's defeat this misguided resolution", he added.

But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is critical of the resolution.

Senate action on the war powers resolution follows a number of votes in the House of Representatives aimed at addressing rising tensions with Iran.

"It sends a shot across his bow that the majority of the Senate and the majority of the House do not want the President waging war without congressional approval", he said.

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