Congress Ignores Obama’s War-by-Fiat

Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

When Barack Obama updated Congress on the war in Libya last Friday, he claimed our role is so limited it does not require Congressional authorization. However, on Monday Hillary Clinton told the European press, “Even today, the United States continues to fly 25 percent of all sorties,” and Obama has promised there will be “no let-up.”

Apparently Congress will have no vote on the matter, either. This week, leaders in the House and Senate have refused to vote for or against the authorization of the war, as the Constitution requires.

Although the Founding Fathers vested Congress alone with the power to make war, Obama launched Operation Odyssey Dawn on the approval of the United Nations and the Arab League. Some interpret the 1973 War Powers Resolution to say the president may send soldiers into harm’s way for 60 days before getting Congressional approval, but Congress has passed no authorization 66 days into the war.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said on Tuesday that the Senate will not vote on the measure before the end of this month.

A spokesperson for House Speaker John Boehner told CNN, “No decisions have been made about how to proceed.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was equally passive on Fox News Sunday, saying, “The administration is going to have to decide whether it thinks [the War Powers Resolution] was triggered and we’ll have to respond to that.”

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said Monday….

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