Thursday, November 08, 2007

Senator McCaskill Expresses Concern About Backdoor Military Action

Today, Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) expressed concern over the Bush Administration’s provocative rhetoric against Iran. In a letter to supporters, she writes:

"My father, a World War II veteran, instilled in me an appreciation of our armed forces, and the young men and women who have done so much to protect the freedoms we cherish. He taught me to appreciate the gravity of warfare, and that war should be pursued only when there are simply no alternatives available.

"The Iraq conflict represents the unfortunate result when these principles are ignored, and I will continue to do everything in my power to force the President to change course. But Congress must be equally vigilant to ensure that new flashpoints in the Middle East do not follow the same failed course as our Iraq policy.

"In particular, I have been concerned with the Bush Administration's provocative rhetoric on Iran, and I am using my seat in the United States Senate to remind the President that military action requires the express consent of Congress. I have resisted efforts to provide what I would call "backdoor" approval for military action in that country. Last month, the Senate considered an amendment that would categorize Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a "foreign terrorist organization". To me, adoption of this amendment could essentially provide approval of military action against Iran, especially by this Administration. I am also concerned that this amendment was debated without the benefit of a single hearing in the Senate Armed Services Committee, of which I am a member.

"I voted against the amendment, and this month joined Senator Jim Webb and other Senate Democrats in a letter to President Bush stating, "We wish to emphasize that no congressional authority exists for unilateral military action against Iran."

"If Iraq has taught us anything, it is that we must be aggressive and vigilant in stopping President Bush and Vice President Cheney from dragging us into new military quagmires. I will continue to do everything in my power to prevent this from happening."

Senator Claire McCaskill

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