House Freedom Caucus Opposes Democrats’ War Powers Resolution Targeting Trump

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

The House Freedom Caucus has issued a statement in opposition to the Democrats’ War Powers Resolution, H. Con. Res. 83, which would prevent the President from engaging in hostilities against Iran without permission from Congress.

The statement said:

One day after Iran launched ballistic missiles at American bases in Iraq, Speaker Pelosi wants to skip meaningful debate on the issue, disallow amendments to the non-binding resolution, and send a political message to her anti-Trump base. 

The statement also acknowledged that debate on war authority would be proper but that this resolution just targets President Donald Trump:

House Freedom Caucus Members agree that the power to declare war is granted by the Constitution to Congress alone and further agree that a genuine, principled debate about the existing Authorizations for Use of Military Force (AUMF) is long overdue.

However, rather than engage with these serious questions, this resolution is a blatantly partisan attempt to diminish President Trump, which should be rejected by all, if Speaker Pelosi finally becomes serious about upholding our Constitutional duties on matters of war and peace, the House Freedom Caucus stands ready to engage.

This comes after 16 Republicans – including 14 members of the Freedom Caucus — voted to end U.S. involvement in the ongoing conflict in Yemen last April.

Those lawmakers voting for the Yemen legislation included Andy Biggs (R-AZ), Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), Rep. Michael Cloud (R-TX), Rep. Warren Davidson (R-OH), Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX)), Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA), Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV), Rep. Bill Posey (R-FL), Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX), and Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ).

CNBC reported the House voted on April 4 to end U.S. support for the Saudi-led military operation in Yemen “setting up the likely second veto of President Donald Trump’s tenure.”

The Senate already passed the resolution in a rare bipartisan check on Trump. It called on the president to “removed United States Armed Forces from hostilities in or affecting” Yemen within 30 days.

The House approved the measure in April 2019 in a 247-175-1 vote, with 16 Republicans joining the majority Democrats in rebuking the president’s policy.

Unlike the Yemen War Powers vote, however, the House’s Iran war vote is not binding and does not require Trump’s signature.

As Breitbart News reported, instead, it is a purely political vote that has no actual legal or legislative teeth behind it, and it will never make it to the president’s desk, even if the U.S. Senate also passes it, because of how House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)  structured the resolution:

The resolution, which Pelosi selected Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) to lead, is structured as what is called a “concurrent resolution” in the House or Senate.

By definition, a “concurrent resolution” is “generally employed to address the sentiments of both chambers, to deal with issues or matters affecting both houses, such as a concurrent budget resolution, or to create a temporary joint committee.”

“Concurrent resolutions are not submitted to the president and thus do not have the force of law,” the official definition continues.

Mark Bednar, a spokesman for House GOP leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), said this is a “show vote.”

“House Democrats would rather take a show vote for their socialist base than stand against the world’s largest state sponsor of terror,” Bednar said in an email.

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