U.S. Senate advances bill to repeal Iraq war authorizations

U.S. Senate advances bill to repeal Iraq war authorizations

Sen. Tim Kaine, D-VA, speaks during a press conference with Sen. Todd Young, R-IN, and members of the American Legion on a bill that would repeal the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), or the legal justifications used to attack Iraq in 1991 and 2003, outside the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC on Thursday, March 16, 2023. Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

March 16 (UPI) — The U.S. Senate voted Thursday to advance a bill that would repeal two authorizations for war in Iraq, which could soon head for a final vote.

The bill would repeal authorizations made in 1991 amid the Gulf War to combat Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait and in 2002 when the United States invaded Iraq to remove the-leader Saddam Hussein from power after the 9/11 terror attacks.

The 69-27 vote was largely bipartisan, though all lawmakers who opposed were Republican, according to the official vote count. The bill, which was co-authored by Republican Sen. Todd Young of Indiana and Democrat Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, was co-sponsored by 12 Republicans.

Those who voted against the measure included Republican heavyweights such as Sens. Mitt Romney of Utah, John Cornyn of Texas and both of Florida’s senators, Rick Scott and Marco Rubio.

“It’s time for Congress to reclaim the power to declare, oversee and end wars –just as our Founders intended and as our men and women in uniform deserve,” Kaine said in a statement.

Kaine’s office shared photographs of the lawmaker with Young, flanked by members of the American Legion and military veterans.

“We owe it to our service members and veterans to formally end endless war,” his office said in the post.

Iraq has become a strategic partner for the United States in the middle east and the authorizations have the potential to be misused by the commander-in-chief, according to The Hill — which noted former President Donald Trump cited the 2002 authorization when he ordered the strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani.

According to CNN, the White House said Thursday that it supports the measure.

“President Biden remains committed to working with the Congress to ensure that outdated authorizations for the use of military force are replaced with a narrow and specific framework more appropriate to protecting Americans from modern terrorist threats,” the White House said in a statement.

“Toward that end, the Administration will ensure that Congress has a clear and thorough understanding of the effect of any such action and of the threats facing U.S. forces, personnel, and interests around the world.”

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