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Constitutional war debate?

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posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 12:51 PM
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A GOP senator, in addition to the many democratic challengers, has finally decided to confront the Bush administration on the power to declare war. Seems the ongoing national debate may soon be an open debate in congress.
 



www.cnn.com
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Senate Republican on Tuesday directly challenged President Bush's declaration that "I am the decision-maker" on issues of war.

"I would suggest respectfully to the president that he is not the sole decider," Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pennsylvania, said during a hearing on Congress' war powers amid an increasingly harsh debate over Iraq war policy. "The decider is a shared and joint responsibility," Specter said.
"The Constitution makes Congress a coequal branch of government. It's time we start acting like it," said Sen. Russell Feingold, D-Wisconsin, who is chairing a hearing Tuesday on Congress' war powers and forwarding legislation to eventually prohibit spending for the deployment of troops to Iraq


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


I think this will be a long coming showdown in our checks and balances system. The Bush administration since 9-11 has been pushing for more executive branch powers, and it appears congress is finally going to push back.

[edit on 30/1/2007 by shooterbrody]

[edit on 30/1/2007 by Mirthful Me]




posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 08:24 PM
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"Read the Constitution," Boxer told her colleagues last week. "The Congress has the power to declare war. And on multiple occasions, we used our power to end conflicts."

Congress used its war powers to cut off or put conditions on spending for the Vietnam war and conflicts in Cambodia, Somalia and Bosnia.

Under the Constitution, lawmakers have the ability to declare war and finance military operations, while the president has control of military forces.


Those three sentences pretty much sum it up. There's not much to argue about here. Bush is not the "supreme leader" he portrays himself as. He's just a power hungry warmonger.

Just too bad Bush didn't understand the Constitution a little bit better, after all, he did swear on a Bible to uphold it.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 08:28 PM
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I am surprised one of his own called him out. And in public as well.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 08:32 PM
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Originally posted by Infoholic
Bush is not the "supreme leader" he portrays himself as. He's just a power hungry warmonger.

Just too bad Bush didn't understand the Constitution a little bit better, after all, he did swear on a Bible to uphold it.


I see now where the comment about the supreme leader you were talking about I kind of go lost on that in another thread.


Yes he can be stop from declaring wars . . . but congress can not stop him from launching an attack against Iran if he desires to so.

Once Bush engage into an attack congress will have to make decisions of supporting our troops or not and that is one touchy subject.

What congress has to do is to find a way to stop bush from launching an attack before it happens.

Because he is going to do it no matter what congress say or not, congress can not stop Bush either from sending more troops to the area.

But they can stop funding the new troops, again is a touchy subject when troops are involved.

Bush knows very well how far he can go and how much he can risk.

One thing that is very interesting is the fact that he is one of the most impeachable presidents in History, but so far the new Democratic congress has backed up and going coward on that matter.

Something doesn't add up if you ask me.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 09:16 PM
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I think it will be a test of the seperation of powers. The president can send troops,but only congress can declare war. I know the president can send troops to Iran, but not for an indefinate time period. To make matters worse the war in Iraq has been a fiasco, and no one trusts this administration because of the mistakes there.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 09:27 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043
Yes he can be stop from declaring wars . . . but congress can not stop him from launching an attack against Iran if he desires to so.

What congress has to do is to find a way to stop bush from launching an attack before it happens.

Because he is going to do it no matter what congress say or not, congress can not stop Bush either from sending more troops to the area.

Bush knows very well how far he can go and how much he can risk.

One thing that is very interesting is the fact that he is one of the most impeachable presidents in History, but so far the new Democratic congress has backed up and going coward on that matter.


President Bush has continued to live under the rule of his "blank check for the war on terrorism" issued to him by Congress, as noted in Public Law 107-243 on October 16, 2002.

Here is that particular resolution passed by Congress: frwebgate.access.gpo.gov...:hj114enr.txt.pdf

That resolution gave him the blank check to do "as he sees fit" in Iraq. That is the only reason he continues to act as a "supreme leader".

I completely understand that Bush may send troops anywhere he sees fit, under the guise of National Security. But the Constitution also prevents him from turning those steps of ensuring the National Security, into a full fledged war.

Bush can easily send troops to Iran, but that doesn't mean he can declare war. Bush hasn't got the power to do that. Period.

Now, your comment of him sending troops to Iran, then it being up to Congress what to do about protecting the troops, is just that... a touchy subject. Show disapproval of the war, and pull funding... that doesn't look good on Congress, because they would essentially be signing our troops' death certificates.

Congress could also ascertain that Bush is "warmongering" in an "unconstitutional" means, and take the issue to the supreme court. At that point, if by chance they are able to prove what the people have accused Bush of, then certainly, they would impeach Bush, and return our troops home.


There is a set of "Cheques and Balances" established (although not expressively noted) in the Constitution. That removes the ideal, that Bush is "the Decision Maker". Bush has an obligation to ensure the safety of the U.S., but that doesn't mean that he can just go around bombing the crap out of every nation, until some nation launches an attack on the U.S., before he can get the approval of Congress to fight them, in his diabolical means.


Meaning nothing more than to enter the U.S. into harms way, is treasonous. He should be stripped of his title of President, and tried accordingly.

[edit on 1/30/2007 by Infoholic]



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 09:35 PM
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Those Senators are dead wrong in this case and I suggest they read the constitution before they eventually embarrass themselves in front of the Supreme Court. They declared war against Iraq, that automatically gives the President as Commander in Chief the authority to do as he sees fit with the troops in Iraq. If congress does not like it, cut the funding. Otherwise they have no legal or historical ground to stand on talking about they can decide and set battlefield decisions via legislation... Morons.

There really is no debate.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 09:41 PM
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Originally posted by WestPoint23
Those Senators are dead wrong in this case and I suggest they read the constitution before they eventually embarrass themselves in front of the Supreme Court. They declared war against Iraq, that automatically gives the President as Commander in Chief the authority to do as he sees fit with the troops in Iraq. If congress does not like it, cut the funding. Otherwise they have no legal or historical ground to stand on talking about they can decide and set battlefield decisions via legislation... Morons.

There really is no debate.


On the contrary, those senators can put an end to Bush's BS in one way, and one way only. Repeal the Resolution.

At that point, Bush would lose his ability to "do as he sees fit".

But as marg6043 stated:

One thing that is very interesting is the fact that he is one of the most impeachable presidents in History, but so far the new Democratic congress has backed up and going coward on that matter.

Something doesn't add up if you ask me.


Those Senators need to buck up and grow some kajones. Repeal the law. Simple. But they won't. Why?

Obviously there is a debate.

[edit on 1/30/2007 by Infoholic]



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 10:38 PM
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Repeal an authorization for war? I'm not even sure how you would go about doing that since this is a resolution and not an amendment, nor how such a thing can be implemented. (Precedent?) Anyway if congress wants to play constitutional darts fine but until then they have no business telling the president how many troops he can and cannot send to Iraq. They gave up that authority when the war was authorized. Again no debate, just congressmen talking due to a recent power high.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 10:46 PM
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Originally posted by WestPoint23
Repeal an authorization for war? I'm not even sure how you would go about doing that since this is a resolution and not an amendment, nor how such a thing can be implemented. (Precedent?) Anyway if congress wants to play constitutional darts fine but until then they have no business telling the president how many troops he can and cannot send to Iraq. They gave up that authority when the war was authorized. Again no debate, just congressmen talking due to a recent power high.


Not a repeal of authorization, but a repeal on the bill. Anything that Congress votes in can be voted out. Laws are not amendments, neither are resolutions. The amendment process is much different than that of a repeal.

Create a petition, get enough people to support it, turn it in to Congress to show the populous' support for such a repeal, and hope like hell that they listen. And don't tell me, "They won't listen, they never do."... until you try it, and fail.

I agree they can't tell him how or what to do, because of steps they've taken. But there are steps they can take to remove the authority they bestowed to Bush. It just takes a Congress with a backbone to change their mistakes.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 11:00 PM
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Infoholic summed it, under the War On Terror powers, he can engage in any war for 90 days without the approval of congress. Then, with the spin, congress won't cut funding of the troops because it would kill them, even if the funds go to Halliburton, not the troops. That's why soldiers in Iraq buy with their salary armor...



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 11:32 PM
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Originally posted by Infoholic
Not a repeal of authorization, but a repeal on the bill. Anything that Congress votes in can be voted out.


And vetoed….

Congress would also have to alter the War Powers Act, even by doing so the presidential war powers also exist in other forms …

Cutting the finances is about the only direct way congress could stop/slow the current conflict. Albeit, by doing so it may shorten many, many, many political careers…cutting funds while US troops are abroad would be a disastrous as well as unheard of…However, this too would be vetoed and more than likely not overturned…the president has very broad powers concerning going to war and involvement in martial conflicts….hence the “Sole Organ”.

An interesting point to put the presidential military powers in perspective is that congress does make the decision in declaring war; but the president is under no legal obligation to act or comply with the declaration of war.

Congress may well be walking into a minefield on this one...

mg



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 12:01 AM
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More false bravado from the Ali Busha's den of thieves?
The drone of it all is enough to put me to sleep after 20 cups of coffee.



The man behind the curtain says,
"Ve vill VIN das VAR und you vill like it!"

[edit on 31-1-2007 by Regenmacher]



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 12:06 AM
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You have some very valid points missed gear. I don't think congress has the stomach to pull funding from the war in Iraq; however if conditions escalate and our troops . next door to Iran I think something will be done.



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 08:29 AM
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We have people in congress that are politicians politicians are only to take care of their political careers, corruption of our political systems is what we have seen right now going in Congress.

Because politicians are only with one thing in mind, to protect their own political butts . . . that is why they are all like cowards when it comes to do anything against Bush.

Plus the power of the lobbyist is to sweet when these politicians needs money for their campaigns.

Again corruption in Washington has gone rampant.

Only if We the people put te pressure they will move their fat lazy poltical butts and do something


[edit on 31-1-2007 by marg6043]



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 09:16 AM
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How much more pressure can the American people put on? The Republicans got their butts handed to them in the midterm elections. The will of the American people should be crystal clear at this point.



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 09:28 AM
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One way to solve this situation is impeachment but , as was so eloquently pointed out last Saturday in Washington DC. Impeach Cheney First.



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 09:31 AM
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shooterbrody

I know, but it seems that in our nation the power of the voters has been forgotten.

Only through demonstrations, rallies and showing the actually people protesting rather than just numbers coming from voting machines with not faces, can the corrupted politicians in our Nation make the connection this days.

Politicians are now considered an elite detach from the common American hard working citizens ruling from the fortress that has become the White house and the Capitol building.

This people has lost what it means to listen to the American voters.


Because hey spend more time with powerful lobbyist.

[edit on 31-1-2007 by marg6043]



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 09:35 AM
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Originally posted by Infoholic
Those three sentences pretty much sum it up. There's not much to argue about here. Bush is not the "supreme leader" he portrays himself as. He's just a power hungry warmonger.

Just too bad Bush didn't understand the Constitution a little bit better, after all, he did swear on a Bible to uphold it.


Considering he said "The Constitution? Its just a damn piece of paper" at one point in this presidency, its obvious how swearing to uphold it can have a different meaning for him then it has to any normal person. He'll protect that piece of paper but whats written on it is of no concern to him.



posted on Jan, 31 2007 @ 11:20 AM
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Originally posted by shooterbrody
The Republicans got their butts handed to them in the midterm elections.


It is not so much a message to the party/president as much as the opposing party would have the public believe…unless it is a mass ejection such as the house election in 1994.

Currently, the Senate is on a razors edge and the Democrats only gained less than 7% of overall house seats after the midterms.


Originally posted by shooterbrody
The will of the American people should be crystal clear at this point.


Less than five million popular votes separated the house election by party (two million less than the senate, with the house having 10+ times the seats up for election) in a very low voter turn-out mid-term election. This is an extremely thin margin when speaking specifically about popular choice along party lines….

imo, there is not enough consensus nor trust in congress among the populace for congress to begin any lengthy processes…there are just too few leaders. Again, imo, the voters want a fix; certainly not a continuance of never ending lip service, party complaints, streams of non-binding resolutions, party back patting, .line grabbing and now the ever growing power struggle.


Originally posted by marg6043
Only if We the people put te pressure they will move their fat lazy poltical butts and do something



Want a real change…begin pressuring for term limits in both houses equal to that of the president and push for a pooled/publically funded third party.

Some of these idiots have taken up room in seats for over 40 years…


Originally posted by thematrix
Considering he said "The Constitution? Its just a damn piece of paper" at one point in this presidency,…


The only thing I could ever find on this all traces back to a 2005 blog article by Doug Thompson:


I've heard from two White House sources who claim they heard from others present in the meeting that the President of the United States called the Constitution "a goddamned piece of paper." emphasis added
Source


This is known as hearsay….nothing more.

If there is another article quoting real attendees to this alleged meeting I would certainly like to read it.



mg




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