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The House next week will vote on a measure to repeal the 2002 law authorizing the president to use military force in Iraq after years of complaints by lawmakers that the authority is outdated and no longer needed.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer announced Thursday that the House would take up Rep. Barbara Lee’s bill to claw back the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force in Iraq. Congress passed the law nearly two decades ago to give then-President George W. Bush the green light to launch U.S. military operations in Iraq, where it was believed Saddam Hussein was concealing weapons of mass destruction.
The House passed a similar measure in the last Congress, most recently by including it in a major defense bill, but it was later stripped out.
The legislation now stands a much greater chance of success in part because the Senate is under the control of Democrats, and President Joe Biden said he wants to work with Congress to rewrite the 2002 AUMF, as well as one passed in 2001.
Democrats say the 2002 authorization serves no purpose.
“It is not needed for any current operations, including in Iraq,” Hoyer, a Maryland Democrat, wrote to the Democratic caucus on Thursday. “Repeal of this unnecessary authority is long overdue.”
Democrats have been increasingly intent on repealing the AUMF, arguing that it gives the president too much authority to use military force overseas without first consulting with Congress.
Republican support has also increased. Two GOP lawmakers voted in committee to advance the repeal measure, and other Republicans say they agree with the need to revise the nearly two-decades-old authorization.
A similar Senate measure has the backing of five Republicans. The Senate bill would also repeal the 1991 AUMF, which authorized then-President George H.W. Bush to use military force in Iraq after it invaded Kuwait.
The legislation, however, would not repeal the 2001 AUMF, which provided President George W. Bush the authority to launch military operations in Afghanistan in the days after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Hoyer pointed out to lawmakers Thursday that military operations against terrorist groups in the region “are conducted under the 2001 AUMF.”
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Original Author: Susan Ferrechio
Original Location: House next week will vote to repeal 2002 Iraq war powers authority