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The US Congress is seeking to restore the President's "mandate to use military force"



 US lawmakers from the Democratic Party said on Friday that they would start working within weeks on legislation to amend the mandate for the use of military force that presidents from both parties have used for decades to justify attacks on targets outside the country.

 

Representative Gregory Mix said that the Foreign Affairs Committee he chairs in the House of Representatives will begin to discuss the abolition of the "mandate to use military force" that allowed for the war in Iraq in 2002.

 

"I intend to prepare legislation in the Foreign Affairs Committee in the coming weeks to cancel it (the mandate)," Mix said in a video conference with a group of Democratic lawmakers.

 

Senators are also seeking to return the power to declare war to Congress from the White House.

 

In the wake of air strikes in Syria ordered by President Joe Biden, a bipartisan group on March 3 introduced legislation to repeal the mandate to use military force in Iraq in 2002, and another mandate approved in 1991.

 

The House of Representatives last year approved the revocation of the 2002 mandate to use military force, but the measure did not win approval from the then Republican-dominated Senate.

 

The constitution grants the power to declare war to Congress, not the president, and this authority changed after Congress approved permits for the "use of military force" that do not expire by a specific date, in decisions related to Iraq, and in a mandate that authorized war against al-Qaeda in the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001.

 

Rep. Barbara Lee, at the press conference, said that "authorizing the use of military force" has been used more than 40 times to justify attacks in 19 countries.

 

She added, "The time has come for us to end these never-ending wars."

 

Adam Schiff, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, said any new mandate should have a fixed date, apply to specific countries, and be consulted with Congress.

 

The White House had said a few days ago, that President Joe Biden believes that legislation "to authorize the use of military force" should be reviewed.

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