Sens. John McCainJohn McCainKirk: Trump ‘a net benefit’ for me in Illinois Trump aide: Ryan not fit to be Speaker if he doesn't support Trump Missouri Republican: Trump has not earned my vote MORE (R-Ariz.) and Tim KaineTim KaineDem senator: Trump would leak classified information Dem senator compares Obama's moves in Syria to Putin's in Ukraine Let the Democratic veepstakes begin MORE (D-Va.) unveiled a bill Thursday that they said would change the way Congress declares war.
The senators said their War Powers Consultation Act was needed because too many presidents have ignored Congress’s authority to declare war.
Kaine said their bill would allow the president to act militarily for up to seven days, but if a conflict exceeds that time allotment, both chambers of Congress would have to vote to continue to use force.
The bill would also establish a “permanent consultation committee” made up of congressional leaders and the four committees that are related to military conflicts — Intelligence, Armed Services, Foreign Relations and Appropriations.
McCain and Kaine said that because some wars are no longer nation-state versus nation-state, updates to the 1973 War Powers Resolution are needed.
“It is essential for the Congress and the president to work together to define a new war powers consultative arrangement that both reflects the nature of conflict in the 21st century and is in line with our Constitution,” McCain said. “The legislation we are introducing today can restore a better balance to the way national security decision-making should work in a great democracy such as ours.”
The senators said their bill was based on recommendations from the National War Powers Commission, a bipartisan effort led by former Secretaries of State James Baker and Warren Christopher.