Senators emerged from an Iran briefing on Wednesday the day after Iran attacked military bases in Iraq which house some U.S. troops. President Trump addressed the nation earlier today, confirming that no Americans had been killed, and that we'd be hitting Iran back with a series of economic sanctions.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) spoke to a group of reporters after the briefing, convinced that if Trump had not approved of the airstrike that killed Iranian terror leader Qasem Soleimani, there would have been "dozens if not hundreds" of casualties. He was "convinced that there was a near term threat."
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-SC) came out of the meeting with the same conclusion that Trump made the right call.
"This was a clear and present danger for American interests," he said.
Yet, Democrats believe the president acted unconstitutionally by taking out Soleimani without consulting Congress, and now they are demanding a vote on a new war powers resolution, authored by Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI), to rein in his military authority in Iran.
Text of the Slotkin War Powers Resolution, which prohibits the president from using U.S. armed forces to engage in hostilities in or against Iran unless Congress declares war or explicitly authorizes it: https://t.co/kAs4nlKM5y https://t.co/n9oFswKTUo— Rebecca Kaplan (@RebeccaRKaplan) January 8, 2020
Rep. Jerry Connolly (D-VA) said the new resolution is necessary because it's been 17 years since the last one.
Dem VA Rep Connolly on Iran & his view Congress needs a new AUMF: The fact that the administration was still signing onto a 17 year old AUMF, under a totally different set of circumstances, ought to be a cause of concern.— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) January 8, 2020
The House plans to vote on Slotkin's resolution on Thursday.
"If you're referring to an AUMF, that is silly," Rubio told press on Wednesday. "It is ridiculous."
There's no need for a new war powers measure, Rubio added, because Trump is not planning an invasion in Iraq. As he tweeted earlier this week, the president "doesn’t need approval from Congress to defend against or prevent imminent attacks against American troops."