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Thursday, 28 August 2014 20:16

Bipartisan Coalition Calls for Authorization Vote Regarding Iraq

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Washington, DC – Yesterday, Congressman Walter Jones, Congresswoman Barbara Lee and Congressman Jim McGovern sent a letter to Speaker Boehner calling for debate and vote on an authorization for the use of military force in Iraq when the House returns on September 8th.
“It is imperative that Congress uphold its constitutional duty to authorize the use of our military. My colleagues and I urge Speaker Boehner to call a debate and a vote on an authorization to expand military force in Iraq so Congress can meet its constitutional responsibility. The situation in Iraq is a grave one and before sending our uniformed men and women into danger we owe it to them and the people we represent to fully debate the matter and have a vote,” said Congressman Jones.

“It is clear that the current mission in Iraq has extended beyond the limited, specific and targeted scope of preventing genocide and ensuring the security of U.S. personnel. The President must seek Congressional authorization before the situation escalates further,” said Congresswoman Lee. “Congress must have the opportunity to debate all options and consequences, including military, economic and diplomatic ones, to prevent the Islamic State (IS) from further destabilizing the region. If an authorization is necessary, it must be limited and specific to prevent passing of another blank check for endless war.”

“I know for some this would be an uncomfortable vote before an election -- but American forces are clearly engaged in military operations and being put in harm’s way,” Congressman McGovern said. “For their sake we owe them a thoughtful and deliberative process and an up-or-down vote. It’s clear that the U.S. mission has gone well beyond simply humanitarian assistance, beyond protecting U.S. personnel, and beyond just Iraq. If the overwhelming, bipartisan vote we took in July means anything, the Speaker should bring an authorization to the floor for a debate and a vote.”

Congressmen McGovern and Jones and Congresswoman Lee were the principle cosponsors of the bipartisan H. Con. Res. 105, which overwhelmingly passed the House before recess with 370 votes. The resolution stated: “The President shall not deploy or maintain United States Armed Forces in a sustained combat role in Iraq without specific statutory authorization for such use enacted after the date of the adoption of this concurrent resolution.”

The letter specifically calls on the House Foreign Affairs Committee to draft the authorization in order to provide a more nuanced approach that will include diplomatic and economic dimensions.

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Andrea Miller

Andrea Miller was the Democratic Nominee in 2008 for House of Representatives in the Virginia 4th District. Prior to running for office, Andrea was a part of Congressman Dennis Kucinich’s presidential campaign, first as Statewide Coordinator for Virginia and subsequently as Regional Coordinator. From 2006 until leading the VA Kucinich campaign Andrea was MoveOn.org’s Regional Coordinator for Central, Southwest and Hampton Roads areas of Virginia and West Virginia. Andrea is also the PDA Virginia co-chair as well as the Technical Director. Andrea co-hosts, organizes and programs PDA's Blog Talk Radio show. She is also the lead designer and production team leader for PDA's websites and printed materials. Andrea co-directs PDA's Capitol Hill letter drops and Hill meetings.

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