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Home / World / Some lawmakers say the Syria strikes were illegal, but there's not much they can do about it

Some lawmakers say the Syria strikes were illegal, but there's not much they can do about it



You called on President Donald Trump's recent decision to launch air strikes against the Syrian regime without Congress' "illegal" and "ruthless" approval. But the legislators of both parties concede, without more support in Congress, for the consistent enforcement of its warming forces. their hands are tied when it comes to pushing back the president.

"It's illegal, it's unconstitutional," Republican Representative Thomas Massie said Tuesday following a secret discussion of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Marine Gen's strikes. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. "It violates the country's most important law, and what makes me sad is that I realize that you can not do anything unless 21

8 people take care of it," he said, citing the number of people in the majority House needed members. 19659002] The US Constitution gives Congress the power to declare war, and the 1973 War Powers Resolution states that the president can declare war only if the US is attacked. But the constitution also calls the president the commander-in-chief of the military; For some years, some governments have used justification to send troops into conflict around the world.

Trump announced Friday night that the United States, along with Great Britain and France, bombed three sites associated with the Syrian chemical weapons program after troops loyal to President Bashar al-Assad unleashed a chemical attack on civilians on April 7 , Many in Congress supported the strikes, and others, such as Bob Corker, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, argued that the presidential constitutional authority allowed for an isolated one. surgical "attack on a regime that has committed a terrible abuse of human rights – even though the US launched a similar strike last year."

"Assad needed a punch, he got one," Republican Don Bacon said Tuesday

Mattis and Dunford quoted on Tuesday, when Massie asked them, Article II, Section II of the Constitution – which names the presidential commander for the legal basis of the strike on Friday, said the legislature, Trump said in a letter to Congress on Monday Sunday also that the strikes are justified by its "constitutional authority" and that they are America's "vital national security and foreign policy interests."

But lawmakers who questioned Trump's authority An attack said that the government was in an ideal world would have to pay a price if they did not first get a permit for using military force t (AUMF) would apply.

"I do not know what we can do, but we need to do something to hold this President to account – any president who does not cling to our three basic branches of government [and] said Californian MP Barbara Lee Democrat, who has also campaigned for warming Congress. "He did not do it."

Massie said Congress could "do a lot" to verify the president's power. "But there is no 218 Members here who are concerned about the president's ability to act, in my opinion, in conflict with the constitution, "said Massie.

Asked what Congress might do if it had the numbers, and whether If it were to sue the president for a military strike that lawmakers did not approve of, Massie said, "No, I think the first thing we should do is to say that he prefers Iran r North Korea can not attack without us being attacked here. We should repeat that and the consequences that would result for Congress. That's my concern. I'm not so worried about this particular strike as it is about the impact it has without Congress in relation to Iran or North Korea. Senate group on Monday also unveiled a new, separate AUM for the global war on terror that would replace the ABVF-derived in 2001 and 2002, which were used by several administrations to evict the sprawling

"Illegal" is not the right word, "Conn Carroll, Communications Director for Utah Senator Mike Lee, said about the strike in Syria. "There is no criminal law that has been violated, that is, the president has acted out of his power, and it is in the interest of Congress to protect its war power under Article I."

"There are many different things that one United Congress could do, "said Carroll [196592002] Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, one of three Democrats who sponsored the new authorization of Monday, also said that there could be a whole range of possible actions that the Congress in response to the decision could hit Syria, which he called "illegal" strategy – […] reckless. "

" You can block the funds, but we just charged them, "he said," my focus is to get the authorization right we are working on and let the government continue its strategy in Syria

But blocking military funding or other punitive measures would only be possible "If you had a majority in the Senate and ambitions to enforce the Constitution," Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, another Republican, a vociferous advocate "The Constitution is a good guide, but if the separation of powers and the branches of government do not try to impose it, it is unenforceable."

Emma Loop is a political reporter on BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC. DC PGP Fingerprint: 4A39 DD99 953C 6CAF D68C 85CD C380 AB23 859B 0611.

Contact Emma Loop at emma.loop@buzzfeed.com.

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