Congress Silent As Obama Ignores War Power Act


Obama is doing what he does best. Proceed with whatever he wants to do and if the law tells him he can’t do it, then just ignore it. This time he is doing it with the War Powers Act and his hometown paper, the Chicago Tribune, is calling him, and Congress, out for their refusal to do what is necessary:

Obama is on the horns of a dilemma. As a candidate, he said the president does not have the power to go to war on his own except in cases of actual or likely attack. But if he were to ask Congress to authorize the Libyan intervention, he would probably be rebuffed. So he’s chosen to simply ignore the law.

But ignoring laws is not what presidents promise to do when they are sworn in. Unless Obama wants to make the case that it’s unconstitutional, as some experts think, he should act (belatedly) to follow it or explain why the Libya operations don’t qualify. The latter would be a stretch, but maybe Defense Secretary Robert Gates wants to elaborate on his theory that Libya is merely a “limited kinetic action,” not a war.

Still, the fault here is not all Obama’s. He has reason to think a president can get away with taking unilateral military action, since Congress is usually reluctant to object. It’s easier for lawmakers to carp than to take action that involves shouldering responsibility for the ensuing outcome.

If Congress wants to assert itself on Libya, it always has the option to pass legislation cutting off funding for those operations, which have cost some $750 million so far. Or it could pass a resolution demanding that Obama pull out our forces. Either step would probably force the administration to turn over the mission to NATO.

Some argue about the constitutionality of the act, and it’s something that should be discussed, but nonetheless it’s the law of the land and Obama appears to be ignoring it. He did send a letter though asking for “support” but he did not mention the War Powers Act:

President Obama sent a letter late last week to congressional leaders endorsing a resolution being drafted in the Senate that expresses support for military action in Libya.

Whether the House debate would focus on a measure supportive or critical of the mission is unclear. Several members of the House, however, have introduced amendments that would restrict funding for the operation.

While Congress would be unlikely to vote down a resolution supporting a U.S. military mission, any measure of support is likely to face opposition from a group of liberals and conservatives who have said Obama erred by deploying the military without explicit congressional backing.

Will Congress push back this time and force him to comply with the WPA? If they do it would be the height of irony that the first challenge in court regarding the War Powers Act will be because of the actions of the man who criticized Bush’s wars….wars that DID have Congressional approval.

And this war does not.

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Obama has not even acknowledged that we are IN a war, even after he took sides against, ”a tyrant who murdered opponents at home and abroad and terrorized innocent people around the world including Americans who were killed by Libyan agents.”
So, here we are in Libya, dropping bombs, shooting missiles, deploying massive amounts of personnel and power.
I’d call those ”acts of war.”
Obama does not.
If Obama admits that these are acts of war he must also stop acting unilaterally.
He must get Congress to sign off on what we are doing in Libya.
Instead Obama calls acts of war ”kinetic something-or-others.”

I love how Obama is spinning this….with help from the media.
Something about a bipartisan group of Senators drafting a resolution of support.

Only one problem:
House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) says no such resolution has been received.

So, John F. Kerry is spinning it another way:
We don’t need no stinking Congressional approval because NATO is in the lead, not the USA.

Then there’s Sen. Lugar who spins it yet another way:
We are so busy NOT passing a budget that we haven’t had time to not bother with this.

Anyway,Obama said the US forces were only going to be there, ”DAYS, not weeks.”

I’ don’t know about you, but I’m dizzy with all this spinning!

And somebody said Nixon ran an “imperial presidency.” I can’t imagine Barry ever turning over the tapes.

“Because the Only Good Progressive is a Failed Progressive”

You know if bush was in power they would screaming their guts out to impeach him,when are we gonna start screaming?????????

Great post Curt.

War Powers Act! What War Powers Act? War! What war? Senate! What Senate? Impeachment! What impeachment?

Congress has done something Obama doesn’t like at all.

Their Defense Bill limits Obama’s authority to reduce the nation’s nuclear arsenal and decide the fate of terrorist suspects.
The bill includes a provision that would prohibit providing money to the administration for removing nuclear weapons from operation unless it reports to Congress on how it plans to modernize the remaining arsenal. The bill also says the president may not change the target list or move weapons out of Europe until he reports to Congress.

Provisions in the bill also limit Obama’s authority to transfer terrorist suspects from the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to foreign countries. The bill also bars transfer of detainees to facilities in the United States, even for trial.

There is also language that would delay the new policy allowing gays to serve openly in the military.

Obama can do only one thing: threaten to veto the defense bill.
He has done that.
Now, let’s see if he follows through.

Time to IMPEACH the terrorist Muslim TERRORIST. Time to move the garbage out..oh! you forget who put him in.. Noted..none of the mail in votes from the troops serving out of the country were ever counted..they were burned by DNC posters as they entered the country..really

I don’t think Congress is silent. That isn’t fair. There are several patriot congressmen who have spoken out and presented leguslation at hearings to address this violation. The majority of members are not listening. Adherance to the Constitution should be the primary issue of the 2012 campaign. Once we start living to the Constitution only, then perhaps its flaws can be seen and we can begin the work our founding fathers started to continue the march to liberty.