Bipartisan Group of Representatives, Including Thomas Massie and Barbara Lee, Hold Press Conference to #StopEndlessWar
A bipartisan group of representatives came together on Wednesday to stand against war with Iran and call for the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force to be repealed.
Speakers at the #StopEndlessWar press conference on Capitol Hill included Republican Rep. Thomas Massie and Rep. Barbara Lee.
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) May 22, 2019
On Tuesday, the House Appropriations Committee approved Rep. Lee’s amendment to the annual defense spending bill that would end the authorization for the use of military force (AUMF). The vote comes amid a rising push from neocons to go to war with Iran.
“The 2001 AUMF has been used as a blank check for endless war by three Administrations,” said Rep. Lee in a statement. “As the Trump Administration escalates tensions with Iran, it is more important than ever for Congress to reassert its constitutional authority. We must start by repealing the overly broad 2001 AUMF and do our job to debate and vote on any replacement.”
The AUMF was passed in the days following the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and have since been used to authorize conflict 41 times in 18 countries — without congressional approval. Rep. Lee was the only member of congress to vote against it at the time.
— Win Without War (@WinWithoutWar) May 22, 2019
“In the last 18 years, it really has become increasingly clear that the AUMF has essentially provided the president, and that’s any president, the authority to wage war anywhere in the world at any time,” Lee said. “It has already been floated as a possibility for using this AUMF as the legal basis to go to war with Iran, a war, again, that Congress has not debated or authorized.”
During Rep. Massie’s speech, he declared that stopping war is not a partisan issue.
“It doesn’t matter whether your favorite Founding Father was Hamilton, Madison, Jefferson or Washington — they all recognized the wisdom in leaving the power to declare war in the Legislative Branch and the danger of letting the Executive Branch have that power,” Rep. Massie said. “The president said he doesn’t want war with Iran and I believe him. But, the easiest way not to have war with Iran is not to start a war with Iran.”
Rep. Massie added that, “he is not authorized, nor is any president authorized, to commit an act of war against any other country without a declaration from Congress.”
“I think it’s important that we remember that,” he said.
This morning, I joined my colleagues in front of the U.S. Capitol building to encourage the repeal of the 2001…
Following the event, Rep. Massie tweeted that “great countries do not fight endless wars.”
Great countries do not fight endless wars.
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) May 22, 2019