Statement: The Powers of War and Peace Belong to the People

congress

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Tuesday March 3, 2020
Contact: Michael Galant  [email protected].org  203-260-4654

WASHINGTON Win Without War Executive Director Stephen Miles released the following statement on the bipartisan House Rules Committee hearing on national security powers:

“Matters of war and peace should be decided by the people. For too long, the powers of national security, vested in Congress by Article I of the Constitution, have been overridden by an increasingly powerful presidency, under both Democrats and Republicans. It’s past time for Congress to reassert itself — to rein in presidential powers and move toward democratizing U.S. national security policy. Today’s House Rules Committee hearing, part of a new bipartisan movement to restore the balance of powers, is a welcome step forward.

“The system of checks and balances is broken. Nowhere is this more apparent than in matters of war powers, arms sales, and national emergencies. We’ve seen these powers abused to send billions of dollars worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia and continue U.S. support for the Saudi and Emirati-led intervention in Yemen despite Congress’s bipartisan opposition; expand our endless wars without Congress’s approval; and declare thirty-three separate ‘national emergencies,’ providing extraordinary powers to the president, with no Congressional action to remove them from the books.

“This is a bipartisan problem. If we’re ever to capitalize on the momentum that we’ve built and restore power to the people, it will require a bipartisan solution. We applaud the Rules Committee, under the leadership of Representatives Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Tom Cole (R-OK), for bringing the issue of Congressional authority to light, and hope that this hearing can kick off a series of reforms that will formally reassert Congress’s constitutional power in law.”

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Win Without War is a diverse network of activists and national organizations working for progressive foreign policy in the United States.