War Powers Act Not Understood by Booker

| June 24, 2019

Corey Booker (who likes to style himself as Spartacus) is running his mouth again. And ABC’s ‘This Week” on Sunday, he rattled on about how Trump as President can’t just send troops to the Middle East without coming to Congress. He references something he calls ‘the 2001’, which is unclear as always with him. Yap, yap, yap, yap.

I believe he’s referring to the War Powers Act update in 2001.

Here’s the text of it:  2001: In the wake of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Congress passed Public Law 107-40 (PDF), authorizing President George W. Bush to “use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.” For the first time, “organizations and persons” are specified in a Congressional authorization to use force pursuant to the War Powers Resolution, rather than just nations.

2002: Congress authorized President George W. Bush to use force against Iraq, pursuant to the War Powers Resolution, in Public Law 107-243 (PDF).

Note that there are no end dates included those texts.

Updates and revisions are listed in chronological order at this link:  https://www.loc.gov/law/help/war-powers.php

He seems to not understand that it does allow the sitting President to send troops to specific destinations, when necessary. If that were not so, then how did Obama get away with it?

His lack of understanding includes a rather wide range of subjects, including his referring to himself as “Spartacus”, a Thracian who was at least an honorable man. He isn’t Spartacus, nor is he even close to that status, but he is a social moron and frequently a buffoon.

It is easy to find him to be a source of amusement, but while we’re laughing and pointing at his constant stream of gaffes, we also have to remember that he somehow got elected to an important role and is making a shambles of it.

Here’s the Breitbart link:

https://www.breitbart.com/clips/2019/06/23/cory-booker-trump-cannot-take-military-action-on-iran-without-coming-to-congress/

The interview on ABC’s “This Week” is in the video in the article.

Sometimes I wonder if he barks at the full Moon, too, but that would put him right up there with that brilliant thinker Occasionally-Conscious, who says incredible things and later on says they were jokes.

Category: "Your Tax Dollars At Work", Politics

Comments (44)

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  1. Comm Center Rat says:

    Maybe Spartacus will convince President Trump to assign end dates to those texts of the War Powers Act. Then Congress can draft some new texts authorizing President Trump to blow shit up in North Korea and Iran, the two remaining members of the Axis of Evil. Which country wants it next? They’ve both been rattling the big dawg’s cage lately – so let’s bite back and put a boot up Rocket Boy’s and the ayatollah’s ass.

  2. 5th/77th FA says:

    Cory Booker’s super powers:

    Bloviating
    Fluffing Towels at Brucie’s (Entrance in the Rear)
    Getting elected by people stupider than him
    Repeating non stop, Orange Man Bad click, Orange Man Bad click, Orange Man Bad click, while servicing winos behind the dumpster at Flying J

    When this POS finally does die I can just imagine the REAL Spartacus saying, “Hold on a minute Lucifer, this one is mine!”

  3. A Proud Infidel®™️ says:

    Corey Booker is NOT Spartacus, he is a bloviating imbecilic buffoon of a poltroon!

  4. Martinjmpr says:

    The president doesn’t require any authorization from Congress to send the troops to war. That is one of the implied powers of the Commander in Chief.

    Congress, of course, can tie the purse strings anytime they want.

    Those powers of the President and Congress both pre-date the WPA (they go back to 1789), which is why the WPA is both unconstitutional and irrelevant.

    Unconstitutional because Congress is a co-equal branch with the presidency and has no more authority to tell the President how to do his job than the President has to tell Congress how to do it’s job; And irrelevant because the only remedy available to Congress to enforce a “violation” of the WPA – that of denying the President the funding for his war – is a power they have whether the WPA exists or not.

    • rgr769 says:

      That cutting off funding is exactly how Congress helped bring about the defeat of the Republic of Vietnam (RVN).

      • Hondo says:

        Indeed. But Congress could only do that because no US combat troops were deployed to South Vietnam at the time.

        IMO it’s highly doubtful that Congress would have done so if we still had a couple of divisions deployed.

        Therein lies the big danger under the current WPA. Sixty days is definitely long enough to deploy a couple of divisions – plus a couple of naval task forces and a couple of USAF wings – into harm’s way. (It’s also long enough for others to do the same.) Should a POTUS do that and at 58 days tell Congress “They’re decisively engaged and we can’t withdraw within 30 days without risking losing them all” . . . what is Congress going to do?

        We haven’t seen that “unintended WPA consequence” scenario – yet. But I fear we might within my lifetime.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      And as long as he doesn’t send any related reports to them, they can’t do anything about it.

      When Harry Truman decided to involve the USA in Korea, it was initially described as a “police action” because the United States never formally declared war on its opponents and the operation was conducted under the auspices of the United Nations.

    • timactual says:

      “That is one of the implied powers of the Commander in Chief.”

      No, it isn’t. The Constitution explicitly gives the power to go to war to the Congress. The Constitution is also careful to list the powers of each branch of government. I find it incredible that the writers of the Constitution would have omitted mention of giving such unilateral power to the executive, particularly after recently fighting a war against such unilateral power.

      Of course, if you can cite any evidence to the contrary, either in the Constitution itself or in any other contemporaneous documents such as of the Federalist papers, I would be interested.

      • Ret_25X says:

        Yes. The war making authority in the Constitution is fairly limited on purpose.

        The Constitution does not really even envision a standing Army (which the republic did not really keep until the post WW2 era). Although a standing Army does not violate the Constitution per se, the large standing force currently kept is part of what makes this all so confusing–even to elected lawyers.

        In a nation with no standing Army, war required the raising of an Army and the funds that coincide with such decisions. With a standing Army, the argument is that congress has mobilized an Army and therefore, the President in the role of Commander in Chief may deploy that Army as it seems necessary.

        I don’t really buy that argument wholesale, but there is a simple truth in it–Congress, but abdicating its role has delegated it upon the Presidency in fact, if not in theory.

        This is really the source of the problem and the source of the confusion among the voting public.

        Why keep such a large Armed Force if you have not also delegated (through abdication of role) the authority to use it? Which, ironically, was the argument for not keeping a standing force to begin with.

        Yet, here we are. What is one to do in a dangerous, connected, and interdependent world with a large Armed Force just sitting there (supposedly) ready and capable of dealing with every hard problem the nation faces? From disaster relief to cyber defense, we delegate more and more of our legislative role upon the military in general and the Executive in particular.

        BTW, this is also why presidential elections have become so contentious. Electing Jefferson over some other guy did not really affect daily life much. These days, the election can potentially redirect billions or trillions of dollars into the voter’s pockets, make war or peace on demand, even enrich entire business sectors overnight (right, General Dynamics?).

        There is no longer any “correct” answer to the war powers dilemma because congress gave up its role long ago and the Executive is not going to just give it back.

      • 26Limabeans says:

        “The Constitution explicitly gives the power to go to war to the Congress”

        Article I section 8 “to declare war”

  5. Just thinking that maybe both parties should have the say so in these Military actions so just in case something happens,(shit hits the fan) both parties would take the blame instead of our POTUS. Then again one would have to think of the loss of life involved from a decision from these the two constipated parties.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      POTUS did call off the strike on Iran because he wasn’t interested in killing off people over the destruction of a drone.

      Other people wanted to escalate that into full-on conflict. There was no point to it, and Trump knew it.

      There may come a time when what you suggest may happen, and if/when it does, I expect we’ll see a lot of finger-pointing.

    • Martinjmpr says:

      In theory that’s exactly how our current system is set up.

      But the theory ignores the reality that when politicians (like Hillary just for one example) are looking for a way to avoid responsibility, they can just claim they were lied to, and therefore should not be held accountable for their votes and so the whole “everybody owns the war” notion disappears in a puff of partisanship and the “blamestorming” begins.

      The truth is, the President is the CinC and is always going to “own” the war, good, bad or indifferent.

      Individual Congressmen don’t bear the “blame” when things go bad, nor do they earn the “credit” when things go well. Like it or not, the POTUS is the one who “owns” any war that happens on his watch and it’s been that way since WWII at least.

  6. 11B-Mailclerk says:

    Note also the power granted to Congress to issue Letters of Marque and (of) Reprisal.

    Congress clearly can authorize violence against foreign annoyances without a “declaration of War”. It is straight-up in the original text.

    Letters of Marque, for example authorize Privateers (or others) to seize named shipping, essentially as prizes. Not technically piracy, since authorized by one’s nation. A letter of Reprisal is similar, but covers other targets and acts.

    • SFC D says:

      I need a small yacht, with mounted miniguns fore, aft, and amidships, a reasonably trained crew, a captain with big brass cojones, and a Letter of Marque. We’re going after Somali pirates. I’ll also need a handful of Hooter’s girls for camouflage and bait. A case or two of good rum would be appreciated. Who’s with me…

  7. timactual says:

    I read all the links, and I saw no mention of Iran. As far as I can tell, Corey Booker is correct. From the War Powers Resolution—

    “(c) The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.”

    https://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/warpower.asp

    I don’t care much for Booker, so it wouldn’t take too much to change my mind.

    • 11B-Mailclerk says:

      Read up on “Letters of Marque and Reprisal” as authorized by the Constitution.

      Congress can authorize a whole bunch of whoop-ass. Without declaring War.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      Truman used the term “police action” to send troops to Korea. The Korean War was waged under the auspices of the UN.

    • Hondo says:

      FWIW: last time I checked, US military aircraft are generally considered a part of the US armed forces. I’m also pretty sure that applies to both manned and unmanned varieties. So it seems to me that the downing of any US aircraft would meet the definition of an attack on US forces under the WPA.

      To my knowledge the WPA has never been tested in court; some argue it is unconstitutional. However, there is little doubt that the language of the WPA empowers the POTUS to insert US forces into a hostile situation w/o declaration of war for up to 60 days (see 50 USC 1544(b) for details), provided that the initial deployment of forces was in response to an attack on the US proper or the US armed forces, even in the absence of any specific statutory authority to do so. Indeed, this was one criticism of the WPA at the time it was enacted: that it empowered the POTUS to do commit forces to hostilites unilaterally, while the Constitution itself does not.

      FWIW: I regard any argument that the WPA is “unconstitutional” as specious. It is true that Article 1, Section 8, Clause 11 gives Congress the sole power to declare war. However, Article 1, Section 8, Clause 14 also gives Congress the power to make “Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces”, while Clause 18 gives Congress the power to make laws “necessary and proper” to enforce its specificly enumerated powers. While Clause 14 has traditionally been interpreted as allowing Congress to give statutory authority for the regulation of the conduct of military personnel (e.g., the UCMJ), the Constitutional language is not limited to that subject – and indeed, does not indicate any such limitation. “Government and regulation” can logicially include restrictions or conditions on use as well as specification of required military conduct and discipline.

      Accordingly, there’s little question in my mind that Congress has the power to grant the POTUS the authority that the WPA gives him. (Whether they should have done so is an entirely different discussion.) IMO in the WPA Congress is only providing regulations concerning the short-term employment of the armed forces in situations short of a declared war prior to Congress considering the matter. same. I don’t see how that can be contrary to the Constitution when the Constitution itself gives Congress explicit authority to do prescribe such regulations.

      In short: if Congress wants to give the POTUS what is effectively carte blanche authority to deploy troops temporarily to combat without a formal declaration of war or other authorization from Congress in response to an attack (however small) on US forces, it is within Congress’ Constitutional authority to do so. And with the WPA, IMO they appear to have done exactly that – with “temporarily” defined as 60 days unless extended by Congress.

      • timactual says:

        It may be in Congress’s authority to give the President carte blanche (thugh I doubt it) but they did not do so.

        My quote is from the same source you cited. It describes the conditions under which the President can use force– “…or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon…”. I contend there is no national emergency created by the destruction of a US drone.

        Your cite describes the actions that must be taken *after* the President’s use of force, and thus *after* the limiting conditions I quoted are satisfied.

        Filing a report within 60 days is NOT sufficient to satisfy the conditions of the WPA (not to be confused with the Works Progress Administration).

        I would also argue that the Constitution’s granting of the power to issue letters of marque and reprisal in the same sentence as the power to declare war indicates that the use of force less than declaration of war is also reserved to Congress.

  8. Mustang Major says:

    Booker is an Idiot. He doesn’t know the law. He also hasn’t absorbed that America has been at a never ending war for some time-with no change in direction on the horizon.

    If America polled 90% in favor of the the nation’s military deployments, candidate Booker would be all in.

  9. I’ll make Book that Booker is a real shit bird

  10. 11B-Mailclerk says:

    SmartAssCuz

    Folks mis-heard it as the revolt leader.

  11. Green Thumb says:

    Corey Booker is sexually inappropriate to women but he is cool (in his mind anyway) because he wrote an apology letter.

    I cannot wait until someone brings that up in the primaries…

  12. FuzeVT says:

    All I have to say is TERM LIMITS
    …………………TERM LIMITS
    …………………TERM LIMITS
    …………………TERM LIMITS
    …………………TERM LIMITS
    …………………TERM LIMITS
    …………………TERM LIMITS

    • A Proud Infidel®™️ says:

      “Politicians and diapers both need to be changed often and for the same reason.” – Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain)

  13. RetiredDevilDoc8404 says:

    Corey Booger is living proof of what happens when you don’t flush or properly close field latrines. Turds can escape and take on a life of their own, assume multiple identities as this one has and fool the deluded voters that they are sentient and spew crap wherever they go in pursuit of more money, power, etc. Remember, he could have been prevented if someone had flushed their toilet properly and not let him escape. Thus endeth the lesson on sentient turd prevention, and you thought field sanitation was all about your health and well being…it’s actually birth control for dummycrap politicians.

  14. Twist says:

    I’m sure that Booker had no problem when Obama was bombing the shit out of Libya without Congressional approval, but hey, that was (D)ifferent

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      I do not think Booker knows where Libya is located.

      • A Proud Infidel®™️ says:

        I don’t think that Corey Booker could even tell his own ass from ice cream, let alone find it at high noon even with a compass, map and searchlight!

  15. reddevil says:

    The War Powers Act gives the president the authority to commit troops only with the authorization of Congress (either a declaration of war or a specific authorization) or in emergencies where there has been an attack on the US, its territories and possessions, or its armed forces.

    So, OEF and OIF were specific authorizations, although we have used the GWOT authorization for many actions following 9/11.

    Odyssey Dawn was highly questionable, since there was no attack on the US. An attack on Iran could be technically authorized since they attacked a military asset.

    A declaration of war sounds awesome, but constitutionally it has no more weight than an authorization for the use of force. Congress still has to write checks every year. No money, no war.

    • Hondo says:

      Sight quibble: the WPA allows the POTUS to continue hostilities beyond 60 days only with Congressional approval in response to an attack on the US or US millitary. The wording of the WPA actually implicitly grants the POTUS authority to commit forces for up to 60 days on his own authority.

      50 USC 1544(b) specifically states that hostilities initiated under the WPA must end at 60 days without Congressional approval. This statement indicates that prior to 60 days, Congressional approval is technically not required.

      The intent doubtless was to allow the POTUS to respond to attacks quickly and let Congress authorize hostilities later if continuation was merited. The apparently unforeseen (and presumably also unintended) consequence was to grant the POTUS unilateral authority to commit US forces to combat in response to an attack on the US or US forces for up to 60 days without Congress having any say in the matter whatsoever.

      • Reddevil says:

        That is correct. The idea is to cement the separation of powers for the use of military force. The president is the Commander in Chief and has the duty and commensurate authorities to secure the nation and defend its interests, and can therefore order military actions in emergencies- both offensive and defensive. . Only Congress can approve enduring operations that go beyond 60 days.

        The other Authorizations for the Use Of Force are open ended, but specify who can be attacked. Iraq, of course is now basically the 51st stTe, complete with its own F’d up government, so we can’t really use that to do much.

        In the case of the GWOT authorization, as long as AQ and any of its descendants or affiliates are around (ISIS and others), It’s game on. POTUS doesn’t even need a reason. However, Congress has the checkbook and can use that and other language in the NDAA to limit what DoD can do.

        • timactual says:

          “… can therefore order military actions in emergencies…”

          The key word!—EMERGENCY.

      • timactual says:

        “The wording of the WPA actually implicitly grants the POTUS authority to commit forces for up to 60 days on his own authority.”

        It explicitly permits the Pres. authority to commit forces, but only under explicit conditions, none of which have been met in the case of this drone shootdown.