If President Barack Obama chooses to unilaterally launch a military attack against Syria in retaliation for the government's alleged use of chemical weapons against civilians last week, he is certain to face criticism that he's overstepping his executive authority.
The president has already run up against resistance from some members of Congress, who argue that under the 1973 War Powers Resolution and the U.S. Constitution he must seek the body’s full approval before taking military action against the country.
The disagreement is part of a larger and thorny constitutional and legal argument over how far Congress can go to check the chief executive's war powers and what types of military actions constitute war.
Rep. Justin Amash, R-Mich., has said it would be “unquestionably unconstitutional” for Obama to bomb the country without Congress’ approval, and he has authored legislation to withhold funds from the effort. Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia also has suggested the presidentRead More »from Does Obama need congressional approval to bomb Syria?