Lawmakers demand amendments on military force vote

A bipartisan coalition of 20 House lawmakers is urging Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerLobbyists race to cash in on cannabis boom Rising star Ratcliffe faces battle to become Trump's intel chief This little engine delivers results for DC children MORE (R-Ohio) to allow amendments when the chamber considers President Obama’s authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) against Islamic militants.

“We owe it to the troops who may be called on to perform this mission, to their families, and to the taxpayers who will be asked to pay for it, to give all members every opportunity to fully debate and shape the substance of this bill on the floor,” the group, led by Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), said in a Feb. 18 letter to BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerLobbyists race to cash in on cannabis boom Rising star Ratcliffe faces battle to become Trump's intel chief This little engine delivers results for DC children MORE.

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The missive, signed by 10 Democrats and 10 Republicans, noted that when the last AUMF was brought to the House floor in 2002, the amendment process was severely restricted, allowing for only two amendments. 

“Repeating this closed process would be a grave mistake,” the group warned.

Obama sent Congress a draft resolution earlier this month asking lawmakers to approve a new resolution of force against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It's the first time lawmakers have been asked to approve a new resolution fo force since the controversial 2002 Iraq War vote.

The proposal prevents Obama from the use of “enduring offensive ground combat operations." The request’s language is widely viewed as being ambiguous in an attempt to win over critics on the left concerned about mission creep and conservative lawmakers who don’t want to restrict possible military action against the terror group.

Boehner himself recently said the proposed authorization isn’t strong enough.

“The president is asking for less authority than he has today under previous authorizations,” he said in a Feb. 15 interview on “Fox News Sunday."

“I don’t think that’s smart," Boehner said. “In addition to a robust authorization, I think we need to have a robust strategy and I don’t believe what the president sent here gives him the flexibility or the authority to take on this enemy and to win.”

It is unclear when, or if, the full chamber will take up the request.

Secretary of State John KerryJohn Forbes KerryA lesson of the Trump, Tlaib, Omar, Netanyahu affair Trump's winning weapon: Time The Memo: O'Rourke looks to hit reset button MORE is slated to appear before two House panels this week to discuss his agency’s fiscal 2016 budget request and the anti-ISIS resolution is bound to come up.

Meanwhile, the House Armed Services Committee on Thursday will hear from outside legal and military experts on the president’s proposal.