It comes just two days after a bipartisan group of senators, led by Tim Kaine (D-Va.) And Todd Young (R-Ind.), Introduced a bill to repeal the Authorization for the Use of Military Force of 2002 and one was approved in 1991 before the first Iraq war.
Senators proposed the measure amid bipartisan anger over Biden’s decision to launch retaliatory airstrikes against Iran-backed militia groups in Syria last week without first seeking congressional approval. The operation frustrated many of Biden’s allies on Hill and renewed long-standing concerns among Democrats and Republicans that Congress has abdicated its constitutional role by declaring war and authorizing military operations.
“Tim Kaine has been a leader on war powers issues during his time in the Senate,” Psaki said in his statement, “and has helped build a strong bipartisan coalition that understands the importance of the constitutional prerogatives of Congress.”
A spokesman for Kaine said the senator “is already in a bipartisan discussion with his colleagues and the administration.”
Sen. Kaine believes that President Biden, who has a deep understanding of the responsibilities of Congress and the executive, is in a unique position to help America restore balance in the way we make decisions about war and peace. ” the spokesman said.
An ideologically diverse group of senators has joined the Kaine-Young effort, a reflection of the fact that mastering presidential war powers has long been a bipartisan priority.
His effort comes amid growing tensions between the United States and Iran; The United States believes an Iranian-backed group was responsible for the rocket attacks on Wednesday that targeted an Iraqi base that housed US troops.
Still, in the days after Biden’s attacks in Syria, lawmakers have questioned the White House’s rationale and legal justification for the attacks. Biden said he ordered the strikes in “self-defense” after Iranian-backed militia groups targeted US forces in the region in recent rocket attacks.
That explanation has not satisfied top Democrats, who have used the strikes to revive their years-long drive to curtail presidential war powers.
Kaine, in particular, has warned of the potential for a tit-for-tat military conflict between the United States and Iran that could erupt into full-blown war. And Democrats have more widely criticized the Biden administration for its lack of engagement with Congress in the days after the strikes.
But unlike previous administrations, the Pentagon did not cite any of the previous war authorizations as a legal justification for the attacks in Syria, indicating that it plans to take a different approach.
Instead, Pentagon press secretary John Kirby pointed to Article II of the Constitution, which gives the commander-in-chief “not only the authority but the obligation to protect US forces,” as well as Article 51 of the Constitution. charter from the United Nations, granting members the right to self-defense.
However, agreeing on a new authorization for the use of military force could prove extremely difficult. For example, widely divergent views remain on the scope or duration of a new Congressional war resolution that would cover ongoing combat operations in numerous places like Afghanistan, Syria, and Iraq, including counterterrorism operations in dozens of other countries.
Former President Barack Obama also proposed replacing the current war authorizations, but failed to reach a bipartisan consensus on the exact guidelines.