Senate rejects bipartisan push for new U.S. war authorization

Sen. Rand Paul speaks on Capitol Hill

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain promised to let senators offer any amendments to the defense bill, paving the way for votes on several issues that will directly challenge President Donald Trump's national security policy. The repeal would not have taken effect until six months after the amendment's passage, however, to give Congress time to pass a new authorization for the use of military force.

The Senate has rejected a bipartisan push for a new war authorization for military forces battling the Islamic State group and other militants.

Despite the failure, Win Without War director Stephen Miles argues that the vote "shows that momentum is building to cancel the president's blank check for endless war", adding that "it's clear that our representatives in Congress are beginning to recognize that after almost two decades, the conflicts we are now fighting have a tenuous connection to the laws that are used to authorize them".

But Paul could find support in both parties from the corner of the Capitol that has been pressing for a new war authorization since the United States began military operations against ISIS in 2014.

The first of the significant amendments to come up for a vote will be a proposal from Sen.




Lawmakers who supported Paul cited concerns about the constitutionality of having an authorization that is loosely defined and that has extended into its second decade. The 2001 AUMF authorized the president's use of "all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons" connected with the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Rand Paul's bid to repeal congressional authorization for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan failed to get off the ground Wednesday, but more than a third of lawmakers showed their support for the Kentucky Republican's move. Jeff Flake of Arizona to draft a new war authorization, says he's likely to back Paul's amendment.

Of those in support of the amendment was Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD).

"It is far too easy and convenient for this Congress to allow for an executive, whether it be a Republican or a Democrat executive, to define the parameters of war and to name new enemies that have not been before this body for debate", he said. "That war is long since over".

Those who opposed brining Paul's amendment for a full vote said the idea had not gone through the proper process, with a full debate and markup period. Sen.

In addition to Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Paul's effort had the backing of Sen.

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