Sen. J.D. Vance (R-Ohio) Website
Phone: (202) 224-3353 Washington, D.C.
Phone: (216) 539-7877 Cleveland
Sen. J.D. Vance (R-Ohio) joined Sens. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Mike Braun (R-Indiana) in co-sponsoring legislation to return authority to wage war to Congress—rather than a unilateral decision of the president of the United States—as per the U.S. Constitution.
S.1872, the End Endless Wars Act, calls for the repeal of the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) and would restore the constitutional role of the people’s representatives in Congress to debate and decide whether, where and how to authorize the use of military force, Paul said.
“If there exists any desire to reclaim our Constitutional power and send a message to the world that we are nation of peace, Congress should pass this bill and repeal the 2001 Authorization for war,” Paul said. “After all, the 2001 AUMF never intended to authorize worldwide war, all the time, everywhere, forever.”
Using 9/11 as the excuse, the AUMF was passed to give the president perpetual authority to drop bombs and blow up civilians with unmanned drones.
The wording of the AUMF was precisely worded to authorize the president to make war on those who attacked us on 9/11 or anyone who harbored them, Paul said.
“Not a word about making war on ‘associated forces.’ Not a word on making war on their descendants. Not a word on making worldwide war on religious extremism. But that’s exactly what the 9/11/2001 AUMF has become —a catchall for permanent war,” he said.
Since its passage, presidential administrations of both parties have used the 2001 AUMF to justify wars in more than 20 countries, from Afghanistan to Libya, to Somalia to Yemen, Paul said.
“By not repealing the 2001 AUMF any president alone has the ability to decide where and when to engage in hostilities without congressional approval,” he said. “The result has been thousands of lives lost and trillions of dollars spent in endless conflicts across the globe.”
In March, the Senate took a step in the right direction and repealed the 1991 and 2002 AUMFs, said Paul, who introduced an amendment to the effort that would have additionally repealed the 2001 AUMF. His amendment was shot down 9-86.
“The 2001 AUMF was enacted in response to the brutal attacks waged on 9/11 by terrorist groups based in Afghanistan,” Lee said. “Twenty-two years later, the 2001 AUMF is still being used, but for conflicts far beyond the boundaries of Afghanistan. Today, we have a defense budget approaching a trillion dollars, we have a military-industrial complex growing richer every day that we remain at war and we have troops deployed across the world under vague authorities like the 2001 AUMF with no defined mission or objectives set by Congress. The 2001 AUMF has become one of the many instruments of misuse, and it is time for members of Congress to end this authority that keeps us in endless wars.”
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