WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, applauded the Senate for voting to repeal the 1991 and 2002 Authorizations for Use of Military Force (AUMFs). Dr. Paul additionally called for the Senate to repeal the 2001 AUMF which would fully return war making powers to Congress.
“The 2001 AUMF was passed days after the attacks of 9/11 to bring the terrorists responsible to justice. But presidential administrations of both parties have used the 9/11 AUMF to justify wars in over 20 countries, from Afghanistan to Libya, to Somalia, to Yemen. The 9/11 AUMF was never intended to authorize war, all the time, everywhere, forever,” said Dr. Paul. “War is sometimes necessary, but going to war should not be the decision of one person. Ending congressional authorization for the Gulf war, Iraq war and Afghanistan war returns the war power to the American people and their representatives.”
The legislation formally repeals the congressional authorizations for the Gulf and Iraq wars, 32 and 20 years since they were first passed. Dr. Paul is a cosponsor of the effort. While this is a step in the right direction, repealing the 2001 AUMF would end the ability of the President alone to decide where and when to engage in hostilities as well as restore the ability of the people and Congress to debate whether to authorize military force.
Dr. Paul introduced an amendment to the 1991 and 2002 AUMFs repeal that would additionally repeal the 2001 AUMF. The final vote tally was 9-86.
Dr. Paul continues to be a leading voice in Congress on the need to repeal outdated AUMFs to prevent potential misuse by the executive branch. He has also raised concerns over the use of military force without congressional authorization.