US House Votes to End 2002 Iraq War Authorization
By VOA News June 17, 2021
The U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill Thursday that would repeal the authorization of use of military force in Iraq that has been in effect since 2002.
Supporters of the measure say the repeal is necessary to restrict presidential war powers.
The 268-161 House vote came one day after Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced his support of the legislation, saying it would prevent acts of "military adventurism" like President Donald Trump's authorization of a 2020 aerial attack on a Baghdad airport.
Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani was killed in the attack.
"The Iraq War has been over for nearly a decade," Schumer said. "The authorization passed in 2002 is no longer necessary in 2021."
Schumer said he planned a Senate vote on the repeal measure later this year, while the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said it would consider it at a meeting next week.
The White House said in a statement Monday it supported the legislation and emphasized that current military operations do not rely on the 2002 authorization.
Republican Congressman Michael McCaul indicated he would oppose the House bill. The lead Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee agreed reform "is needed" but added that a serious effort would have included talks with national security leaders and a new strategy to tackle the evolving war on terrorism.
The U.S. Constitution grants Congress the authority to declare war. That power has shifted to the president, however, as Congress approved "forever war" AUMFs (Authorization for Use of Military Force), which have not expired.
Examples include the 2002 Iraqi war and the fight against al-Qaida and affiliates after the terrorist attacks on the U.S. on September 11, 2001.
Some legislators say the 2001 resolution to combat terrorism that was approved after the September 11 attacks, should also be reassessed.
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