The House’s steadiest advocate for peace knows what it takes to stand up for your ideals.
Barbara Lee explains her rationale for voting against the Authorization to Use Military Force in Afghanistan, citing the overly broad nature of the bill.
Recognizing the Flaws & Failures of the 2001 AUMF ( )
Lee, who was the sole NO vote on the 2001 AUMF passed in response to the 9/11 attacks, offered another amendment to express the sense of Congress that the 2001 AUMF has been utilized well beyond the scope that Congress intended, that it has served as a blank check for any President to wage war at any time and any place, and that any new authorization for the use of military force to replace the 2001 AUMF should include a sunset clause, a clear and specific expression of objectives, targets, and geographic scope, and reporting requirements. Eighteen years ago, she feared that the AUMF would be a blank check, and that is exactly what it has been.
The amendment passed 237 to 183. 215 Democrats, 21 Republicans, and Amash voted for it. 167 Republicans and 16 Democrats voted against it.
Here are the 16 warmongering Democrats:
The House voted Wednesday to repeal the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), which was passed in the days after 9/11, and gave President George W. Bush the authority to go to war with al-Qaeda and any related organization. For the past 18 years, presidents of both parties have used this same 2001 congressional war authorization as justification for wars all over the Middle East.
My amendment to repeal the 2001 AUMF was included in the passage of HR 2470, which will sunset the 2001 AUMF after eight months, giving Congress and the Executive Branch plenty of time to debate and vote on a new AUMF once signed by the Executive.
“Two years ago, this same amendment was passed out of the Appropriations Committee on a bipartisan basis but was undemocratically stripped out by House Speaker Paul Ryan. The passage of this spending bill with the 2001 AUMF repeal included is a historic and timely step forward in reasserting Congress’ constitutional authority on matters of war and peace.
This month could mark the first time a chamber of the U.S. Congress has moved to repeal the 2001 AUMF, which has been used by three presidents to keep the U.S. in a state of war for nearly 18 years.
In May, the House Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment to the annual defense spending bill from Representative Barbara Lee that would repeal the 2001 law eight months after enactment. The amendment passed through committee on a party-line vote of 30-22. It could pass, should the Democratic majority remain unified, as early as this week when it comes up for consideration.
(14. September 2016)
The congresswoman was the only “no” vote on a sweeping 9/11 war authorization that’s still in use.
Congresswoman Lee was the only member of Congress to oppose the 2001 AUMF. At the time, Congresswoman Lee wrote in the San Francisco Chronicle that the authorization “was a blank check to the president.”
According to the Congressional Research Service, the 2001 AUMF has been used to justify US military action at least 41 times in 19 countries.
The full text of the legislation is available here. The bill has 46 original cosponsors.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee threw her support behind the measure and said, “I am pleased with the inclusion of this amendment, which clarifies that the President does not have the authority to go to war with Iran.”
“Just weeks after President Trump shamefully pulled out of the Iran Deal, it is more important than ever to ensure diplomacy with Iran and in the region. I am proud to be a cosponsor of this important amendment and will do everything in my power to ensure we do not go to war with Iran,” she noted.
WASHINGTON, DC (April 12, 2018) – U.S. Representatives Mark Pocan (WI-02), Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Keith Ellison (MN-05), Barbara Lee (CA-13), and Henry C. “Hank” Johnson Jr. (GA-04) released the following statement in advance of demonstrations scheduled to take place on Friday within the territory of Gaza. The Members of Congress are urging Gaza protesters to carry out their right to assembly nonviolently, while also calling on members of Israel Defense Forces to exercise utmost restraint in the use of deadly force and to fully comply with international law.