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Kaine revises Trump Iran war resolution as he courts GOP support

Kaine revises Trump Iran war resolution as he courts GOP support
© Greg Nash

Sen. Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineRick Scott tests positive for coronavirus Grassley tests positive for coronavirus Top Democrat calls Trump's Afghan drawdown 'the right policy decision' as others warn of 'mistake' MORE (D-Va.) said he is making changes to his resolution that would limit President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden team wants to understand Trump effort to 'hollow out government agencies' Trump's remaking of the judicial system Overnight Defense: Trump transgender ban 'inflicts concrete harms,' study says | China objects to US admiral's Taiwan visit MORE's ability to take military action against Iran as he tries to pick up more Republican support.

Kaine has been talking with GOP senators, including a half-hour meeting with Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsWhoopi Goldberg blasts Republicans not speaking against Trump: 'This is an attempted coup' Democrats face increasing pressure to back smaller COVID-19 stimulus Team Trump offering 'fire hose' of conspiracy Kool-Aid for supporters MORE (R-Maine), in an effort to secure the 51 votes needed for the resolution to initially pass the Senate.
 
"Republicans are giving us some good suggestions ... so we're in the process of trying to develop a managers package that would get more people on board," Kaine said Thursday.
 
Kaine's resolution would force Trump to remove troops from hostilities against Iran within 30 days unless the activity is meant to respond to an "imminent" threat. Democrats will be able to bring Kaine's resolution to the floor as soon as Tuesday morning, where he'll need 51 votes to get it through the chamber.
 
So far two Republicans — Sens. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeLoeffler isolating after possible COVID-19 infection Rick Scott tests positive for coronavirus OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Barrasso to seek top spot on Energy and Natural Resources Committee | Forest Service finalizes rule weakening environmental review of its projects | Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight MORE (Utah) and Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulLoeffler isolating after possible COVID-19 infection Rick Scott tests positive for coronavirus Overnight Defense: Formal negotiations inch forward on defense bill with Confederate base name language | Senators look to block B UAE arms sales | Trump administration imposes Iran sanctions over human rights abuses MORE (Ky.) — have said they will support the measure. Lee noted that Kaine had agreed to make changes that helped win over his support.
 
Kaine, in his war powers resolution, said he is removing two paragraphs in the "findings" section of his measure that directly mention Trump. 
 
"I don't criticize the president ... but I've had from these two Republicans but also a Democrat or two say 'hey this is really about any president. This is not about President Trump.' I said 'good point.' They ask that we drop it, those two paragraphs, so I'm going to drop those two paragraphs," Kaine said.
 
He added that he's also making "really technical changes" to help clarify the intent of the resolution.
 
In addition to Paul and Lee, Collins and Jerry MoranGerald (Jerry) MoranIt's time for Congress to act: Save jobs and stabilize the aerospace industry Lobbying world This World Suicide Prevention Day, let's recommit to protecting the lives of our veterans MORE (R-Kan.) voted for a similar amendment that Kaine and Sen. Tom UdallThomas (Tom) Stewart UdallHouse Democrats push Biden to pick Haaland as next Interior secretary OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Haaland being vetted by Biden team for Interior Secretary | Progressive group slams Biden White House pick over tie to fossil fuel industry | Green groups sue over Arctic drilling plans Haaland being vetted by Biden team for Interior secretary MORE (D-N.M.) offered to the National Defense Authorization Act. The proposal fell short at the time because it needed 60 votes to be added to the mammoth defense policy bill.
 
Collins said on Thursday that she had a meeting with Kaine on Wednesday to discuss the resolution.
 
"The language is not yet final, and we discussed some of the issues. Until Sen. Kaine decides on his final language, I cannot determine whether or not I will support it," she said.
 
Moran has also said he is undecided on Kaine's resolution. 
 
Kaine said he is also talking to a broader group of Republican colleagues, including lawmakers on the Foreign Relations Committee and those who supported ending U.S. backing for Saudi Arabia's military activities in Yemen.
 
 
Asked on Thursday if he thought the changes he was making were enough to win over Young and Collins, which would give him 51 votes, Kaine demurred. 
 
"I think they view them positively. Whether they're enough you know we're still in dialogue," Kaine said. "But they've given us some changes, some of which we've made."