Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) has signed onto the “No War with Iran Act” proposed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) to deny funding for military action in Iran until it is explicitly authored by Congress.
Sanders and Lee were united in anger following a briefing by hawkish members of the White House, in which they claimed that Congressional approval was not necessary for the administration to wage war.
“They are justifying the assassination of Qasem Soleimani by claiming that he was planning ‘imminent attacks’ on hundreds of Americans in the region and yet they produced no evidence that would justify this claim, not even in a classified setting,” Sanders said in a statement.
Lee was particularly enraged by the briefing from Defense Secretary Mark Esper, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, CIA Director Gina Haspel and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley. He called it “probably the worst briefing I’ve seen on a military issue” throughout his years in Washington D.C. and was outspoken publicly about his anger.
“It is not acceptable for officials within the executive branch of government…to come in and tell us that we can’t debate and discuss the appropriateness of military intervention against Iran. It’s un-American. It’s unconstitutional and it’s wrong,” Lee said.
After dealing with the belligerent members of the Trump administration, Lee believes it is more important than ever to push back on behalf of the U.S. Constitution – which states that Congress must approve a war for it to be lawful.
“As United States Senators, we often disagree on many issues. But standing up for the Constitution is not about partisanship. The Founding Fathers were absolutely clear. They wanted to ensure that our country avoided needless conflict and they understood that presidential war-making would be harmful to our democracy,” Sanders and Lee said in a joint statement.
Congress passed a war powers resolution on Thursday in which Republicans joined Democrats in an attempt to stop another forever war in the Middle East.
“I represent more troops than any other member of this body. I buried one of them earlier today at Arlington,” Gaetz said in a social media post.
“If our servicemembers have the courage to fight and die in these wars, Congress ought to have the courage to vote for or against them,” he added. “I’m voting for this resolution.”
The “No War with Iran Act” has 11 other co-sponsors besides Sanders and Lee, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY). As President Trump ventures further away from the “America First” foreign policy he called for on the campaign trail, lawmakers will continue to unite in an attempt to resist his support of intervention.