Sunday, June 19, 2011

Libya Lawsuit

Just last week the several lawmakers in Congress decided to take action against the Obama Administration's unconstitutional war in Libya in the form of filing a lawsuit, however, the reasons of some are not as noble as one may think.

On June 15, CBS reported that "A bipartisan group of 10 lawmakers is suing President Barack Obama for taking military action against Libya without war authorization from Congress." Speaker of the House, John Boehner, asked Obama to "explain the legal grounds for the continued U.S. military involvement and set a Friday deadline for the commander in chief's response," he also cited that the president had violated the War Powers Act.

While it may seem that Boehner and other Republicans who are criticizing Obama's war in Libya are genuinely concerned about the American public, they are not. As is known, the House is currently in the hands of the Republican party and the presidential race of 2012 has begun already with a recent presidential debate. The opposition to US involvement in Libya isn't that the Republican party truly cares about US servicemen and women or about the fact that the country cannot afford it (see: Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan), it is the fact that they want to do their best to make Obama look bad so that they will have a better chance at winning the presidential elections in 2012. Senator McCain framed it best when he said "I would say to my Republican friends: If this were a Republican president, would you be trying to impose these same conditions?" The answer is no. If they weren't playing politics, the House wouldn't have voted down an amendment to "scale back military operations in Afghanistan."  As Howard Dean asked recently, "Where were these anti-war GOPers under Bush?"

Despite this lawsuit, the White House in not backing down. The BBC reported that President Obama didn't need Congressional authority to bombard Libya as "US forces involved in the Nato campaign are merely playing a supporting role" and that role "does not match the definition of 'hostilities' as described under a 1973 law that constrains the US president's ability to wage military conflict." However, the fact of the matter is that the President still sent military forces into Libya when none of the conditions met the ones in the War Powers Act (I covered this in an earlier blog post).

While the Republican opposition to the war is questionable, what matters is that members of Congress are finally acting and holding the President accountable for his actions, something we have not seen in quite a while.

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