The U.S. Senate on Thursday passed a bill limiting President Donald Trump's ability to wage war against Iran.
The vote is a rebuke to Trump a month after he ordered a drone strike that killed a top Iranian commander, a move that prompted Tehran to fire more than a dozen ballistic missiles at U.S. forces stationed in Iraq.
The bill requires the President to withdraw U.S. troops engaged in hostilities with Iran, unless he obtains Congressional approval.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC SENATOR TIM KAINE, SAYING:
"Those of us in this body - and maybe those of us, especially, who didn't wear the uniform, and didn't serve - we have a special obligation to make sure that we deliberate and deliberate carefully before we send the troops into harm's way."
Proponents say the measure re-asserts Congress's role in declaring war after decades of ceding control to the White House over the course of several administrations.
But the bill specifically mentions Iran, and the measure was born out of fears Trump could intentionally or inadvertently bring the U.S. into armed conflict with Tehran.
Trump opposed the bill, tweeting, "It is very important for our Country’s security that the United States Senate not vote for the Iran War Powers Resolution... If my hands were tied, Iran would have a field day. Sends a very bad signal. The Democrats are only doing this as an attempt to embarrass the Republican Party."
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC SENATE MINORITY LEADER CHUCH SCHUMER, SAYING:
"This resolution is going to pass with a bipartisan majority of senators in support, a rarity these days. If this is purely an attempt to embarrass the president, well, it's going to be a bipartisan one."
Republicans control the Senate, but eight members of the president's party joined Democrats to pass the war powers resolution, 55 to 45.
Opponents say the bill's passage sends the wrong message to Tehran.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. REPUBLICAN SENATOR JAMES RISCH, SAYING:
"Iran, take note. If you continue on the path that you are on with your malign activities, it is going to take you to a very bad place. I urge a no-vote."
The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives passed a similar resolution last month, but there are enough differences between the Senate's version and the House's that it must pass that chamber again before it can be sent to Trump's desk.
Trump has promised to veto the measure.
The bill would require two thirds of the Senate, to override the veto and become law.