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PRESS RELEASE


House Appropriations Committee Votes To Repeal 2001 Authorization To Use Military Force

June 30, 2017 (EIRNS)—The House Appropriations Committee, apparently much to the surprise of many of those present, approved an amendment to the fiscal 2018 defense spending bill that would repeal the 2001 Authorization To Use Military Force (AUMF). According to Associated Press, the amendment, sponsored by Barbara Lee, unexpectedly won on a voice vote. Lee’s amendment would repeal the 2001 AUMF—which has been used as the legal basis for all of the wars conducted by the United States ever since—240 days after the bill is enacted, which Lee said in a statement "would allow plenty of time for Congress to finally live up to its constitutional obligation to debate and vote on any new AUMF." It remains to be seen whether or not it’ll survive on the House floor because the amendment is a policy provision on a spending bill, which is a violation of the House rules, and so could be struck from the bill.

But the fact remains that for Lee’s amendment to have passed in the committee, it required the support of Republicans. A number of Republicans, who may not otherwise agree with Lee, argued that American troops fighting overseas deserve a debate in Congress and its support. Those named by Defense News include Representatives Scott Taylor, a former Navy SEAL from Virginia, and Chris Stewart of Utah, a former Air Force pilot, and Tom Cole (Okla.), the chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, who argued Congress must reassert its war-making authority under the Constitution, something that Congressional leaders have been avoiding for years.