After the decision to restrict his military actions against Iran ... what are Trump's options?

2 weeks ago

On Thursday, the US Senate voted in favor of limiting President Donald Trump's ability to attack Iran militarily, in a move that comes amid a debate in Congress over the powers that the president should have to launch military attacks abroad.

The resolution, submitted by Democrat Senator Tim Kean, stipulates that Trump must obtain congressional approval before engaging in more military action against Iran.

But it also allows the president to launch self-defense attacks in the event of an "imminent attack."

It is noteworthy that eight Republican members joined the Democrats to pass the legislation to end the vote with the approval of 55 members, compared to the rejection of 45 members of the Republican-dominated Council.

Kane and other supporters said the legislation was not about Trump or even the presidency, but rather aimed to reassert Congressional authority linked to the declaration of war.

Kane said that Trump and any of the presidents "must always have the ability to defend the United States against any imminent attack, but the Executive Force to start the war stops there. The offensive war requires a debate in Congress and a vote."

Leader of the majority in the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, Steny Hoyer, said that the House may adopt Senate legislation later this month.

Two-thirds of the votes in the House and Senate will be needed to bypass the veto that the president has pledged to use against the decision.

The president had warned in a tweet that the decision would send a "very bad signal" and allow Tehran to act unchecked:

"We need to send a message that reflects strength, not weakness," said Senator Jim Rich, chairman of the council's Foreign Relations Committee.

Kean is counting on the president changing his position on this issue, given that this decision is in line with his vision to end the American wars abroad.

In this context, Kane said, "He might look at things and say this is what the American people promised and he might say that the law gives me the ability to defend the United States against any imminent attack."

Supporters of the resolution believe that, despite Trump's veto last year’s use of the decision to end military support for the Saudi-led forces in Yemen, he decided after a few months to stop supplying fuel to coalition forces in Yemen.

But the chances of passing the law, after the veto in the event Trump uses this right, are still weak given that the Senate is not expected to secure a sufficient number, because the majority of Republican members do not usually vote against the president.

Among the opponents of the project, the Republican majority leader in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, who voted against him, and called on the supporters of the project to secure at least 67 votes in the House.

In addition to using the presidential veto, Trump administration officials assert that the president already has the authority to take action against Iran under a 2002 congressional mandate to use military force.

It is not known whether the vote on the Senate’s decision in the House of Representatives will gain strong support from Republicans, given that a similar bill from the House of Representatives, passed last month with the approval of 224 members in exchange for 194 objections, was joined by only three Republicans.

The vote was dominated by partisan character, in contrast to a deep division in Congress over Trump's Iran policy and to what extent members should have a say in the matter of using the military.

The White House criticized support for the decision in the Democratic-dominated House of Representatives, calling it "ridiculous ... and just another political movement."

He said in a statement that the decision "attempts to obstruct the president's authority to protect America and our interests in the region from continuing threats."

Source AlHurra