Presidential harassment is becoming more and more obvious. Last night, the democrat-controlled House of Representatives passed empty legislation that does nothing to limit the President Trump’s war powers, but simply provides snippy talking points for leftists and media propagandists.
Mostly along party lines, Nancy Pelosi rammed through her flaccid resolution supposedly condemning President Trump’s actions against a known terror-supporting ‘mastermind.’
“We deserve the respect from the administration and that Congress deserves under the Constitution,” Pelosi claimed. “The Constitution of the United States calls that there be cooperation when initiating hostilities.”
Of course, she didn’t care two cents when Obama bombed Pakistan, Libya, Yemen, Somalia, and Syria without congressional approval, some of which killed hundreds of civilians.
In fact, the real snit here is because the president kept his actions a secret from congress. And, many argue there is a solid reason for doing so. Essentially, there are too many potential threats sitting in the legislative branch of government to be able to trust not to warn U.S. enemies of any potential preemptive self-defense, which could cost lives.
So, it’s easier to keep these leakers in the dark.
The resolution “requires the president to consult with Congress ‘in every possible instance’ before introducing United States Armed Forces into hostilities.”
[This is laughable to many people.]
The measure also aimed to handcuff Trump when it comes to future strikes.
The resolution says that “Congress has not authorized the president to use military force against Iran.” The measure “directs the president 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 there is a specific blessing by Congress.
“The president has the right and duty to protect this nation and our citizens from terrorism. That’s what he continues to do, and the world is safer for it,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley responded.
“This House resolution tries to undermine the ability of the U.S. Armed Forces to prevent terrorist activity by Iran and its proxies, and attempts to hinder the president’s authority to protect America and our interests in the region from the continued threats. These Congressional actions are completely misguided. In fact, this ridiculous resolution is just another political move because, under well-established Supreme Court precedent, it’s non-binding and lacks the force of law.”
The resolution was widely panned by Republican lawmakers in the House, who called the measure a political move against the president and accused Democrats of empowering Iran by condemning the White House’s airstrike.
“For the party that claims they care about the Constitution, Democrats might want to brush up on their facts,” said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. “If they did, they’d realize their actions today are shameful and are embarrassing even by the low standards they set in their impeachment inquiry.”
Vice President Pence said Thursday that Soleimani “was traveling the region making plans to bring an attack against American personnel and American forces.” He said it was not possible to share full details of the intelligence with lawmakers.
“When it comes to intelligence, we have to protect sources and methods, there’s only a certain amount we can share with every member of Congress,” Pence said on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” adding: “But those of us who have seen all the evidence know that there was a compelling case of imminent threat against American personnel.”
Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL): “In classified briefing, it appeared defense & intelligence reps held back info out of concern too many Congressmen can’t be trusted to keep classified info from USA enemies.”https://t.co/vvvr0rDhdw https://t.co/Zao3rWC5Wj
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) January 9, 2020
Yet this bill wouldn’t have any real-world effect. It’s just a concurrent resolution, which lacks the force of law. The House and Senate typically use such measures to send anodyne congratulations and adjourn Congress.
“This is a statement of the Congress of the United States, and I will not have that statement be diminished by whether the president will veto it or not,” Pelosi barked Thursday in justifying the empty legislation.
There are real questions about whether the executive has been overreaching its war-powers authority for more than a decade, but this stunt won’t do a thing to start resolving them.
President Barack Obama ordered strikes in a half-dozen countries without a single congressional authorization, and Democratic leaders didn’t lift a finger to restrain him. Pakistan, Libya, Yemen, Somalia, Syria: Obama bombed in all of them without Congress’ specific OK. He ordered 500-plus drone strikes that killed thousands, including a few hundred civilians — and Pelosi, Democratic House leader the whole eight years, made no righteous “statement.”
New York freshman Rep. Max Rose, an Army combat veteran of Afghanistan, was a rare Democrat who called out Pelosi’s ploy. “I refuse to play politics with questions of war and peace and therefore will not support this resolution,” he said. Would that more in Congress showed such courage.