The top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee introduced legislation Tuesday, authorizing President Obama to use military force against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
The bill would allow the president to “use all necessary and appropriate force to protect Americans and defend national security interests against IS [Islamic State] and any successor organization,” said Sen. James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeOvernight Defense & National Security — Presented by Boeing — Pentagon vows more airstrike transparency Senate GOP threatens to block defense bill Outcry grows over Russian missile test that hit satellite MORE (R-Okla.) in a statement, using an alternate name for the group.
The measure would allow Obama “to adjust efforts to defeat IS as the terrorist organization evolves or changes,” he added.
Inhofe’s bill is the third offered in Congress to authorize military action against ISIS.
Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) on Monday, introduced a bill giving Obama authority “to use all necessary and appropriate force” against terrorist groups, including ISIS. In the upper chamber, Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) unveiled a separate measure.
It is unclear if any of the proposals will receive a vote before lawmakers adjourn at the end of next week, with congressional leaders wary of taking such a controversial step ahead of the midterms.
Inhofe’s measure would require Obama to deliver a “written comprehensive strategy” to Congress within 15 days of enactment and require updates on how the strategy is being implemented every 90 days.
The Oklahoma senator said his resolution gives the U.S. and allies “clear authority to go after IS fighters, finances and their networks across the globe.”
The group’s operations are not “confined by borders or timelines and neither should the U.S. effort to defeat them,” he said. “IS is an evolving threat, and the president must have the flexibility needed to adjust as conditions on the ground change.”
Inhofe warned that any “limitations” placed on the administration would “create seams that are certain to be fully exploited by IS and will decrease the effectiveness of any action taken.”
He said the U.S. must “demonstrate that we’re serious about protecting Americans and our interests.”
President Obama will meet with congressional leaders to discuss his strategy for ISIS on Tuesday and will address the nation on his plans Wednesday.