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Dem senators tell Trump he doesn’t have ‘legal authority’ to launch preemptive strike on North Korea

Dem senators tell Trump he doesn’t have ‘legal authority’ to launch preemptive strike on North Korea
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More than a dozen Democratic senators argued in a letter to President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump alludes to possible 2024 run in White House remarks Trump threatens to veto defense bill over tech liability shield Tiger King's attorney believes they're close to getting pardon from Trump MORE on Monday that he doesn’t have the authority to order a preemptive strike on North Korea.

“Like many, we are deeply concerned about the potential consequences of a preemptive military strike on North Korea and the risks of miscalculation and retaliation,” the senators wrote.

“Without congressional authority, a preventative or preemptive U.S. military strike would lack either a constitutional basis or legal authority,” they added. 

Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), who sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee, organized the letter. It was signed by 17 other Democrats and independents, including Sens. Ben CardinBenjamin (Ben) Louis CardinDemocratic senators urge Facebook to take action on anti-Muslim bigotry On The Money: Biden, Democratic leaders push for lame-duck coronavirus deal | Business groups shudder at Sanders as Labor secretary | Congress could pass retirement bill as soon as this year Top Democrat: Congress could pass retirement bill as soon as this year MORE (D-Md.), Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineCongress set for chaotic year-end sprint Democrats face increasing pressure to back smaller COVID-19 stimulus Rick Scott tests positive for coronavirus MORE (D-Va.), Bernie SandersBernie SandersDeVos knocks free college push as 'socialist takeover of higher education' The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Capital One — Giuliani denies discussing preemptive pardon with Trump Manchin: Ocasio-Cortez 'more active on Twitter than anything else' MORE (I-Vt.), Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisSenate GOP's campaign arm rakes in M as Georgia runoffs heat up Biden, Harris to sit with CNN's Tapper in first post-election joint interview The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Capital One — Giuliani denies discussing preemptive pardon with Trump MORE (D-Calif.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenOn The Money: McConnell offering new coronavirus relief bill | Biden introduces economic team, vows swift action on relief | Rare Mnuchin-Powell spat takes center stage at COVID-19 hearing Biden introduces economic team, vows swift action on struggling economy Louisville mayor declares racism a public health crisis MORE (D-Mass.).

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The Washington Post first reported the letter. 

The senators also expressed concerns over reports that Victor Cha would no longer be considered for the U.S. ambassador to South Korea after he objected to the possibility of a preemptive strike against North Korea.

The Trump administration is said to be considering options for a potential targeted military strike against North Korea, or a “bloody nose” strategy, which would be used to show Pyongyang the consequences of an all-out war.