Feb. 16, 2015

Republicans: Obama’s AUMF Against ISIL Is a Rough Draft

It’s a bit disorientating when Barack Obama – who isn’t known for executive restraint – goes to Congress to ask for the power to fight ISIL and Congress says the president needs more power. But this fight between Obama and Republicans is not over presidential power, but what must be America’s strategy to defeat these Islamic militants. Over the weekend, Republican legislators rebutted Obama’s proposed Authorization for Use of Military Force against ISIL. Sen. John McCain echoed our own analysis: “It’s absolutely clear that if we had left a residual force [in Iraq], it would have remained stable. You have to have a stable force.” In his rebuttal, House Speaker John Boehner added, “The president is asking for less authority than he has today under previous authorizations. I don’t think that’s smart. We need a robust strategy to take on ISIL. No one has seen one from this White House yet. … I look at the submission by the president as the beginning of the process.” Unfortunately, you can only lead a president to a proper AUMF, you can’t make him fight.

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