A lawsuit filed in June by ten congressmen against the administration’s military intervention in Libya was dismissed by a federal judge Thursday.
The lawsuit asserted that President Obama had violated the War Powers Act by not seeking congressional approval for the military intervention within the required 60 days.
Judge Reggie Walton ruled that the congressmen did not have standing to challenge the president’s decision to involve the American military in the conflict.
“While there may conceivably be some political benefit in suing the President and the Secretary of Defense, in light of shrinking judicial budgets, scarce judicial resources, and a heavy caseload, the Court finds it frustrating to expend time and effort adjudicating the relitigation of settled questions of law,” Walton decreed.
Ohio Democratic Rep. Dennis Kucinich and North Carolina Republican Rep. Walter Jones released a joint statement Thursday evening, announcing their intention to appeal the decision.
“Judge Reggie Walton has refused to address the merits of the constitutional claim of our case,” the congressmen wrote. “This lawsuit is not just about checking executive power, but also about securing the right of Members of Congress to defend the constitutionally required balance of power in court. This case can help set an important precedent on both issues.”
Kucinich and Jones wrote that, “We believe that we have cause for a meritorious appeal. We will consult with our colleagues who are a party to the case before making any decision for all participants.”
The eight other congressmen joining in the lawsuit were Republican Reps. Howard Coble of North Carolina, John Duncan of Tennessee, Roscoe Bartlett of Maryland, Ron Paul of Texas, Tim Johnson of Illinois, Dan Burton of Indiana and Democratic Reps. John Conyers of Michigan and Michael Capuano of Massachusetts.
The Obama administration filed a motion to dismiss the legal challenge in August, writing that, “In Raines v. Byrd, the Supreme Court flatly rejected the standing of members of Congress to sue in their legislative capacities.”
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- Reggie Walton
- Dennis Kucinich
- Walter Jones
- President Obama