Bipartisan group of senators introduces bill to rein in Biden's war powers

Bipartisan group of senators introduces bill to rein in Biden's war powers
© Greg Nash

A bipartisan group of senators introduced a bill on Wednesday to repeal two military authorizations, effectively curbing President BidenJoe BidenBiden says he didn't 'overpromise' Finland PM pledges 'extremely tough' sanctions should Russia invade Ukraine Russia: Nothing less than NATO expansion ban is acceptable MORE’s war powers.

The bill, spearheaded by Sens. Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineDesperate Dems signal support for cutting Biden bill down in size Overnight Energy & Environment — Biden's wildfire plan White House dismisses report of new Build Back Better package MORE (D-Va.) and Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungDemocrats return with lengthy to-do list Don't just delay student debt, prevent it Senate confirms Rahm Emanuel to be ambassador to Japan MORE (R-Ind.), would repeal the 1991 and 2002 authorizations for the use of military force (AUMF), which both deal with Iraq.

The bill comes as lawmakers have voiced frustration about a lack of consultation with Congress over the United States' strikes last week in Syria, marking the first known military action ordered by Biden. The administration didn’t cite either authorization for those actions.

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“Last week’s airstrikes in Syria show that the Executive Branch, regardless of party, will continue to stretch its war powers,” Kaine said in a statement.

“I call on Congress to promptly take up this measure and for the Biden Administration to support it to finally show the American people that the Article I and II branches can work together on these issues,” he added.

Young added that Congress has been “operating on autopilot” when it comes to authorizing military force.

“Congress must not shy away from this debate and I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to advance this important legislation,” he added.

In addition to Kaine and Young, Sens. Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthWe must learn from the Afghanistan experience — starting with the withdrawal As democracy withers, Bob Dole and other American soldiers must be remembered Overnight Defense & National Security — Austin mandates vaccine for Guardsmen MORE (D-Ill.), Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeSchumer ramps up filibuster fight ahead of Jan. 6 anniversary Juan Williams: The GOP is an anti-America party Manchin faces pressure from Gillibrand, other colleagues on paid family leave MORE (R-Utah), Chris CoonsChris Andrew CoonsDemocrats' filibuster gambit unravels Sen. Rob Portman announces positive COVID-19 test Ukraine president, US lawmakers huddle amid tensions with Russia MORE (D-Del.), Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyBig Tech critics launch new project Senate antitrust bill has serious ramifications for consumers and small businesses Hillicon Valley: Amazon's Alabama union fight — take two MORE (R-Iowa), Dick DurbinDick DurbinDemocrats make final plea for voting rights ahead of filibuster showdown Democrats, poised for filibuster defeat, pick at old wounds  Schumer prepares for Senate floor showdown with Manchin, Sinema MORE (D-Ill.) and Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulI'm furious about Democrats taking the blame — it's time to fight back Rand Paul cancels DirecTV subscription after it drops OAN Trump slams Biden, voices unsubstantiated election fraud claims at first rally of 2022 MORE (R-Ky.) are backing the bill.

Senators have tried for years to reform or repeal the existing military authorizations, but the legislation has gotten bogged down by partisan divisions on Capitol Hill or jockeying between the executive and legislative branches.

Kaine said he informed the White House during a call this week about his bill. He noted while they didn’t make any commitments, they seemed “really willing to engage.”