- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 26, 2019

A bipartisan duo on the House Armed Services Committee has unveiled legislation that would prohibit defense funds from being used to conduct military operations against Iran and declares that the Trump administration cannot cite the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force to take military action on Iran.

The bill, sponsored by Reps. Ro Khanna, California Democrat, and Matt Gaetz, Florida Republican, closely mirrors a similar Senate amendment that requires Congress’s approval to go to war with Iran, and would not allow any funds from the pending 2020 National Defense Authorization Act to be used against Iran.

The Senate provision has sparked a bitter partisan divide as Democrats fear President Trump’s moves will ignite an armed conflict, and Republicans argue the president’s military authority should not be restricted.

Mr. Trump and his aides have repeatedly insisted they already have the authority for military action against Iran to protect American and allied interests in the Middle East.

“Last week, we watched President Trump come within minutes of striking Iran and involving the United States in yet another trillion-dollar war in the Middle East,” said Rep. Khanna in a statement, citing Mr. Trump’s move to call off a strike on Iran in response to Tehran’s shoot-down of an unmanned American drone.

The House legislation has garnered support from 16 other Democrats, including committee Chairman Rep. Adam Smith, Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Eliot Engel, and Rules Committee Chairman Rep. Jim McGovern.

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