The Senate on Thursday voted to pass a resolution limiting President Trump’s power to order military strikes against Iran without the approval of Congress.
The bipartisan 55-45 vote — in which eight Republicans joined all the chamber’s Democrats in approving the resolution — was seen as a rebuke to Trump’s opposition to consulting Congress when making foreign policy decisions.
But the measure is largely symbolic as it has been slammed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Trump, and so is not likely to garner enough Republican support to override an expected presidential veto. That would require a two-thirds majority.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) introduced the measure, which invokes the War Powers Act to block the commander-in-chief from launching future attacks against the Islamic Republic.
The resolution would require the president to pull US troops fighting Iran unless Congress declared war or passed a specific authorization for the use of military force.
Trump said Wednesday passage would send the wrong message to Tehran.
“It is very important for our Country’s SECURITY that the United States Senate not vote for the Iran War Powers Resolution. We are doing very well with Iran and this is not the time to show weakness,” Trump wrote on Twitter.
“We don’t send a message of weakness when we stand up for the rule of law,” he said Wednesday.
The Democrat-led House passed a similar resolution last month, as Democrats and some Republicans fumed over Trump’s failure to fully inform them about his Iran strategy.
Trump last month ordered a drone strike that killed Iranian military commander Qassem Soleimani at the airport in Baghdad, but did not inform Congress until afterward.
Fears that the country was on the brink of war with Iran added new fuel to an ongoing effort by members of both parties to take back the power to declare war from the White House.
The Constitution gives Congress, not the president, the power to declare war.
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