In the near future, Congress will debate a new Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF). I use the word “debate” lightly. So far, no hearings have been scheduled, and no testimony is likely to be heard unless something changes. That’s a shame, because this is a serious matter, and this is a deeply flawed AUMF.

For some time now, Congress has abdicated its responsibility to declare war. The status quo is that we are at war anywhere and anytime the president says so.

So Congress—in a very Congress way of doing things—has a “solution.” Instead of reclaiming its...Read more

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Over the past several days, there has been an increasingly granular debate about the degree of Gina Haspel’s participation in the torturing of detainees at the CIA’s Thailand “black site,” with neocons going out of their way to try to defend the president’s choice to run the agency in the wake of Mike Pompeo’s departure for Foggy Bottom.

Some details may be disputed, but it remains true that Haspel ran a secret center in Thailand where prisoners were tortured.

There is no question that during her career, Haspel...Read more

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Since President Trump took office, our country finally seems to be heading in the right direction. In just the past year, the American people have seen enormous tax cuts, more judges appointed who take the Constitution seriously, relief from the massive regulatory state, and an economy rapidly gaining strength and offering greater opportunities for those seeking to turn their dreams into reality.

But when it comes to our place on the world stage, we are at a crossroads. We can continue to build on our recent successes by reaffirming America’s role as a trusted, powerful nation...Read more

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The neocons have been so completely and regularly wrong for decades now that it’s almost unimaginable to believe they would ever be in a position to advise a president again – let alone to wield the kind of power they will have if they lead some of our nation’s most powerful institutions.

Yet the past week has brought such a resurgence of this failed ideology that you would be forgiven for thinking we had time-traveled back to 2003.

Since President Trump took office, we have removed unnecessary and overzealous regulations from the American people’s backs, cut taxes,...Read more

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Despite overwhelming support from the American people for action, and a grassroots push that has led to multiple victories in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Senate has so far failed to follow the lead of our colleagues across the Capitol to Audit the Fed.

So the Federal Reserve continues to largely dictate the terms of its own transparency, the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) hands remain tied from conducting a thorough audit, and you pay the price through devalued savings, higher costs, and devastating economic crashes ushered in by market manipulation.

I...Read more

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Is our military budget too small, or is our mission too large? Since 2001, the U.S. military budget has more than doubled in nominal terms and grown over 37% accounting for inflation. The U.S. spends more than the next eight countries combined.

It's really hard to argue that our military is underfunded, so perhaps our mission has grown too large. That mission includes being currently involved in combat operations in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia, Niger, Libya, and Yemen. We have troops in over 50 of 54 African countries. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost over a...Read more

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Last night, for a few hours, your government shut down. Most likely, you slept soundly while this happened. The sun rose, and the world went on. The Government is open again. But the reason for and message behind yesterday’s debate and action in the Senate is still here.

The Senate was set to vote on a 700-page bill that added over $500 billion in new spending to our already out-of-control debt. It was a massive and destructive bargain struck by the leaders of both parties, where both got to blow up the spending “caps” they agreed to just a few short years ago.

I simply asked...Read more

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A military parade in the nation’s capital? The last military parade in Washington was in 1991, after our victory in the first Iraq War.

Though the martial image of high-stepping soldiers is not one I tend to associate with our nation’s Founders’ distrust of a standing Army, I’m not against a victory celebration. So I propose we declare victory in Afghanistan, bring home our 14,000 troops and hold a victory parade.

We defeated the enemy in Afghanistan. We killed or captured the terrorists who planned, plotted, or aided in the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. We killed the...Read more

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I ran into a couple of GOP senators the other day. They were talking about the fall of the Roman Empire (who knew senators might actually discuss history?). One senator made the point that Rome’s fall corresponded with a loss of values, which of course has some merit. But that’s missing the bigger picture. I responded that perhaps their decline had something to do with being overextended militarily, knowing that they would likely reject this point since it might imply that the United States, also, might be faced with the same future.

History certainly has lessons, but it’s amazing...Read more

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It has been said that Ronald Reagan observed that “the person who agrees with you 80% of the time is a friend and an ally — not a 20% traitor.” I try to take this approach as well, and though I have disagreements with GOP leaders in the White House and Congress, I try to focus on the areas of agreement whenever possible.

I do not always align with President Trump — and I have voiced my opposition at times, including voting against some of his nominees and initiatives. But I will tell you, he has had some great success through his first year, and I look forward to what 2018 will...Read more

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