Why Biden authorized airstrikes in Syria, Democratic lawmakers urge explanation

The Biden administration is accused of bypassing Congress and directly ordering airstrikes on targets in Syria. Several Democrats said Friday (26) they want the Biden Administration to explain why the airstrikes were carried out.

Tim Kaine, D-N.Y., chairman of the Senate Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee, said in a statement, “The American people deserve to hear the administration’s justification for these strikes and the legal basis for acting without congressional approval. The American people deserve to hear the administration’s justification for these attacks and the legal basis for acting without congressional approval. Absent extraordinary circumstances, offensive military action without congressional approval is unconstitutional, and Congress must be fully and promptly briefed on this matter.”

House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Gregory Meeks, D-Mich. Gregory Meeks (D-Calif.) said he expects “more specific information” about the airstrike.

He added that in terms of “Iranian-backed militia attacks on U.S. forces and the U.S. response,” “I will look to the provisions of the War Powers Resolution in assessing the appropriate role of Congress. .”

The War Powers Resolution states that the President “shall consult with Congress whenever possible before engaging the armed forces of the United States in war or in situations that clearly require immediate involvement.”

The resolution also provides that in the absence of a congressional declaration of war or other limited exception, the President shall report to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate within 48 hours the use of U.S. forces “with a detailed statement of the circumstances under which such war was initiated, the estimated scope and duration of such war, and the constitutional and statutory basis for initiating such war “

The Senate tried to limit former President Trump‘s ability to take military action against Iran last year, but failed to override a veto.

Biden on Thursday authorized airstrikes on a number of sites in eastern Syria. The Pentagon says the sites have links to Iranian-backed militant groups.

A Pentagon spokesman said the airstrikes were in retaliation for recent attacks on U.S. and coalition personnel in Iraq.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said, “We are confident that the same Shiite militia that carried out the attack (was) using those (airstrikes) targets.”

Lawmakers were divided on the issue of the airstrikes. Some questioned it, while others argued the airstrikes were legal.

Rep. Nancy Mace, a South Carolina Republican, said Biden’s attack was a “reckless abuse of his presidential power,” adding, “We should be ending wars, not starting them.”

Sen. Rand Paul, a Kentucky Republican, said, “I condemn the intervention in the Syrian civil war. I also condemn the unauthorized attack on a sovereign nation.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham, the senior Republican from South Carolina, expressed support for the airstrikes. In a statement, he wrote, “Our enemies must know that there is a price to pay for attacking Americans.”

Other lawmakers who supported the airstrikes included Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney, D-N.Y.