War Powers Act
The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment. – Article II, Section 2
It’s not a good feeling agreeing with Dennis Kucinich. Finding myself on the same side of an issue as Kucinich makes me seriously reconsider my opinion. But as they say, even a bind, deaf, paralyzed, rabies-afflicted squirrel finds a nut every now and again.
It’s less distressing to disagree with Charles Krauthammer. He’s usually spot on, but he tends to go off the rails when it comes to foreign policy. Not always, mind you, but in Krauthammer you can see the legitimate difference between neoconservatism and traditional conservatism. Last night he had this to say about the War Powers Act and President Obama’s
war hostilities kinetic military action in Libya:
KRAUTHAMMER: I understand why Congress wants to retain prerogatives, as does the president. I’m not surprised that Durbin would act this way. I am surprised that so many Republicans are jumping on the war powers resolution. They will regret it. If you have a Republican in office, you have isolationists Democrats trying to restrain his exercise of his powers under constitution and the Republicans aren’t going to like it.
I would not truck in war powers resolution. I have also think the administration’s defense of what it is doing is extremely week and misguided. Obama’s answer essentially is well, the resolution is out there. But it’s not relevant because it isn’t really a war, which is absurd.
BAIER: We’re not in hostilities.
KRAUTHAMMER: Right. What he should say I, like my other predecessor, I do not recognize the legality of this act and its authority over the presidency. That’s where he should make his stand.
BAIER: When he was Senator Obama he spoke the opposite.
KRAUTHAMMER: And as a president he is implicitly supporting the resolution saying it doesn’t apply here. It implies if it were a real war, as he pretends it’s not. I have to comply. No president ought to do that.
I agree with him with regards to Obama’s duplicity. I also share his skepticism about the War Powers Act. But he’s wrong about the rest. Continue reading