Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) are working to kill a House deal to reauthorize expiring intelligence programs and reform the surveillance court, throwing up an eleventh hour roadblock to the agreement.
Paul, a libertarian-minded Republican, is pushing for broader surveillance court reforms to be included as part of any bill that reauthorizes or extends the expiring provisions of the USA Freedom Act, a 2015 law that overhauled the country’s intelligence programs.
„The time is ripe now. It’s an inflection point. You’ve got Republicans coming around to this,“ Paul said.
Trump’s apparent support for including broader changes to the surveillance court associated with FISA comes as he’s railed repeatedly about his campaign being “spied” upon by the Obama-era FBI.
Progressives and libertarian-minded Republicans have long pushed to reform the court, arguing enough privacy protections and transparency aren’t given to individuals targeted for government surveillance.
The vote was 55-45. Eight Republicans voted in favor of it: Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Todd Young of Indiana, Mike Lee of Utah, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Susan Collins of Maine, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana and Jerry Moran of Kansas.
Kudos to Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Todd C. Young (R-Ind.), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) for their integrity in standing up for the resolution put forward by Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) that joins the House to remind the administration that the Constitution gave Congress the right to declare war.
Lee said that the language of the resolution is unobjectionable, saying it simply states that „additional hostilities against Iran need to be authorized by Congress.“ He added, „That is a perfectly unremarkable statement. […] The fact that this would be objectionable to anyone in either political party is really saying something.“ That’s particularly true after Kaine agreed to amendments from Republicans to make the resolution applicable to any president, and to ensure that it wouldn’t force a withdrawal of troops in areas where proxy forces of Iran are present.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) is circulating a bipartisan resolution that would direct Trump to remove U.S. forces from any hostilities against Iran within 30 days of its enactment.
GOP Sens. Mike Lee (Utah) and Rand Paul (Ky.) have already voiced their support for the measure, and Kaine says about eight more Republicans, including Sens. Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Todd Young (Ind.) and Mitt Romney (Utah), are reviewing it.
Graham told reporters on Wednesday that he thought Paul and Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) were „overreacting“ by criticizing comments made during a closed-door Iran briefing.
„They’re libertarians,“ Graham said. „I think they’re overreacting, quite frankly. Go debate all you want to. I’m going to debate you. Trust me, I’m going to let people know that at this moment in time to play this game with the war powers act … whether you mean to or not, you’re empowering the enemy.“
Senators on Wednesday introduced a resolution stressing that neither the 2001 nor 2002 authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) covers a potential war with Iran.
The resolution, spearheaded by Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.), comes after days of escalating tensions between Washington and Tehran in the wake of a U.S. airstrike that killed Qassem Soleimani, Iran’s top military general.
He also said he considers killing the general an act of war that requires permission of Congress.
Then-candidate Trump said often that the Iraq War was a mistake, and that we were in too many places for too long. Fast-forward to 2019, and the president is now moving forward to stop the “endless wars.” I stand with him.
The idea that our president would make this decision from this perspective is refreshing and long-awaited. Virtually every president in my lifetime has ended up in a new conflict or extending and expanding the old ones.
In particular, in the past 18 years, from Iraq to Libya to Syria, past presidents went into one bad misadventure after another.
“There is a chance that Assad and Erdoğan — if Assad will guarantee his side of the border — that there could be a retreat of Turkey back within its borders and you actually could maybe set up something where the Kurds actually get some provincial or semi-autonomous control,” he told Hill.TV.
(5.3.2019) Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) discuss new legislation they introduced that would effectively end the US war in Afghanistan. #CNN #News
If passed, the AFGHAN Service Act would also permanently end America’s involvement in Afghanistan and overturn the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force, said the lawmakers, who serve on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
„It is time to declare the victory we achieved long ago, bring them home, and put America’s needs first,“ Paul said.
(c) REPEAL OF AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF MILITARY FORCE
—The Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107–40) is repealed effective on the earlier of —
(1) the date that is 395 days after the date of the enactment of this joint resolution: or
(2) the date on which the Secretary of Defense certifies that all United States Armed Forces involved in operations or military actions in Afghanistan (as described in subsection (a)(1)(A)) have departed from Afghanistan.
In a 21-77 vote on Thursday, the Senate rejected a bill from Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) aiming to block a $300 million arms sale to Bahrain. The bill was heavily opposed by the White House.
Auf Besuch in Moskau hat US-Senator Rand Paul nach eigenen Angaben einen Brief von Präsident Donald Trump an Kreml-Chef Wladimir Putin übergeben. Das Schreiben schlage eine Kooperation gegen Terroristen, einen Dialog der Parlamente beider Länder und eine Wiederaufnahme des kulturellen Austausches vor. Paul schrieb heute im Kurznachrichtendienst Twitter: „Ich hatte die Ehre, einen Brief von Präsident Trump an die Führung von Präsident Putin zu überbringen.“
The Republican senator was expected to meet Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov during his visit, the Interfax news agency cited a diplomatic source as saying last week.
Der Senat wird voraussichtlich am Donnerstag über Pompeo abstimmen. Nach erheblichem Widerstand der Demokraten und auch aus Reihen der Republikaner gegen den als aussenpolitischen Falken verschrienen Pompeo galt die Bestätigung der Nominierung zunächst als unsicher.
Die Republikaner verfügen im Senat nur über eine ganz knappe Mehrheit. Jedoch hatten sich bis Montag mehrere demokratische Senatoren bereit erklärt, für Pompeo zu stimmen, der als aussenpolitischer Fachmann gilt.
Coons finally arrived. However, Isakson was still in Georgia. The vote to report Pompeo out of committee with a favorable recommendation would be 10-10.
By rule, ties fail. But Corker forged ahead, declaring that Isakson, despite his absence was “aye by proxy.” So 11-10. Still, committee rules forbid proxy votes on behalf of absent senators if they impact the outcome of a roll call tally. So there was a conundrum.
If they oppose the nominee they should vote no! That’s how congress works!
„In voting to recommend Mike Pompeo for Secretary of State, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted against diplomacy today, and for a foreign policy even more inclined towards war,“ Paul Kawika Martin, senior director for policy and political affairs at Peace Action said in a statement following the vote. „Pompeo’s record of warmongering, climate denial, and Islamophobia speaks for itself.“