Legal authorization for Libya mission set to expire in 10 days

posted at 7:37 pm on May 10, 2011 by Allahpundit

That’s according to the War Powers Act, which, you may remember, the White House apparently has no intention of abiding by.

Someone, be it the ACLU, a peace group, or maybe even Rand Paul, is going to file suit if we pass the 60-day deadline without congressional authorization. So there’s the silver lining in this dubious executive move: At last, the War Powers Act will be tested in court.

The War Powers Resolution of 1973 allows the president to commit U.S. forces for 60 days without the explicit authorization of Congress, with another 30 days allowed for the withdrawal of those forces…

But the administration won’t be immediately pressed to follow the law if nobody in Congress intends to enforce it. Both leaders of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee told The Cable on Tuesday that there are no plans for Senate action on the war in Libya — before or after the deadline.

“I’m not hearing from my colleagues that they feel the War Powers situation is currently in play because we’re deferring to NATO,” committee chairman Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) told The Cable. Kerry had been working on a resolution with Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) but the text was never finalized…

Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN), the committee’s ranking Republican, told The Cable he also doesn’t see any action on the horizon, but he called on the Senate to start conducting oversight of the war and demanding more details from the Obama administration.

Lindsey Graham told Slate he’s “surprised that no one’s pushed that issue harder,” but that he’s “comfortable” with inherent executive authority on this. The purpose of the War Powers Act, according to its first section, is to “insure that the collective judgment of both the Congress and the President will apply to the introduction of United States Armed Forces into hostilities” — which is to say, it’s Congress’s official judgment that they’re not comfortable with inherent executive authority after 60 days of hostilities have elapsed. But rather than take the political risk of either formally endorsing a mission that could turn bad quickly or formally rejecting a mission before we’ve achieved our goal, they’re going to look the other way via the flimsy pretext that this isn’t “our” mission anymore but NATO’s. I don’t know why it should matter who’s leading the mission so long as there are U.S. servicemen or military assets in harm’s way, but that’s their story and they’re sticking to it.

Incidentally, has anyone seen any recent reports about whether U.S. airmen are still flying missions over Libya? Our drones are in the sky over Tripoli and elsewhere, providing useful reconnaissance as Britain and France make their attempts to kill Qaddafi increasingly obvious. But I can’t find any news of late about whether American jets are still aloft and targeting regime units. (This article is almost a month old.) Coverage of Libya was already on its way down the news chute 10 days ago, but killing Bin Laden has left it an almost total afterthought. Which, of course, is another reason why Congress doesn’t want to take this issue up. If the public doesn’t care anymore, why revive a debate?


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

NO BLOOD FOR OIL!1!11

Oh, wait, the President is a Democrat?

Never mind.

Good Solid B-Plus on May 10, 2011 at 7:40 PM

Looks like it’s time for SEAL team 6 7!

Keef Overbite on May 10, 2011 at 7:42 PM

It’s a military and legal quagmire!

DKCZ on May 10, 2011 at 7:43 PM

It’s a NATO operation and this he doesn’t care.

Gutsy? This is the weasel of all weasels in chief.

Schadenfreude on May 10, 2011 at 7:43 PM

08 Obama would be very mad at 11 Obama.

MikeknaJ on May 10, 2011 at 7:44 PM

…hey, the rebels need a few billions. Just send the money.

Schadenfreude on May 10, 2011 at 7:44 PM

Don’t worry, while you were out, Eric Holder called and said it was okay.

cynccook on May 10, 2011 at 7:44 PM

Kirsten Powers carried water yesterday for this weasel. She could hardly keep a straight face at her own lies.

Schadenfreude on May 10, 2011 at 7:45 PM

Barack Obama, a pure amateur at geopolitics and military affairs.

A skilled amateur would have done better than this dipstick in chief.

ajacksonian on May 10, 2011 at 7:46 PM

If the public doesn’t care anymore, why revive a debate?

I’d say there is still a significant (?) portion of the public that *might* care. I’ve seen lefty blogs chattering about Howard Dean and Afghanistan withdrawal. How can you be for withdrawing from Afghanistan but remaining in/over Libya?

MeatHeadinCA on May 10, 2011 at 7:47 PM

Why do we share this information?

Why not wait for the eleventh day and issue a warrant?

KZnextzone on May 10, 2011 at 7:48 PM

No problem, I think we’re all done there since the President explicitly promised it would only be “days, not weeks.”

G. Charles on May 10, 2011 at 7:50 PM

I wonder what “Gutsy” move Obamsyss II will make?

portlandon on May 10, 2011 at 7:51 PM

Daniels-Christie 2012 Gathering Steam

http://conservativeblogscentral.blogspot.com/2011/05/daniels-christie-2012-gathering-steam.html

Nearly Nobody on May 10, 2011 at 7:51 PM

“treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors”…

d1carter on May 10, 2011 at 7:51 PM

Has it really been 50 days?

What are we doing? Why isn’t this hurting Obama more? Gaddafi mocks him openly, daring him to come get him. We ought to have a count down of days past the days not weeks thing.

petunia on May 10, 2011 at 7:52 PM

be it the ACLU

Yeah, I’m sure they’ll jump right on that.

Let’s be honest: Obama doesn’t care. If he even bothers to offer an excuse, he’ll say we’re not really involved anymore and/or that he doesn’t believe in the constitutionality of the War Powers act anyway.

amerpundit on May 10, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Oddly enough, I have not heard much about Libya recently, But I have heard all about some moat those crazy a$$ed Republicans want to build. What’s up with that?

anniekc on May 10, 2011 at 7:54 PM

I’m not hearing from my colleagues that they feel the War Powers situation is currently in play because we’re deferring to NATO,” committee chairman Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) told The Cable. Kerry had been working on a resolution with Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) but the text was never finalized…

The skids, are greased. I’ll wager a bet that on the 11th day, not a peep will be heard.

Kini on May 10, 2011 at 7:55 PM

Both leaders of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee told The Cable on Tuesday that there are no plans for Senate action on the war in Libya — before or after the deadline.

hello, mcfly?

bizarro world…the lsm and the congress were clamoring for authorization during W’s term…

double standard part 5,546

cmsinaz on May 10, 2011 at 7:57 PM

If the public doesn’t care anymore, why revive a debate?

Seriously?

tetriskid on May 10, 2011 at 7:57 PM

If the public doesn’t care anymore, why revive a debate?

They’ll care when we lose the first airman, and then Congress will get the blame for not stepping in and accepting their responsibility to reign in obaka.

ladyingray on May 10, 2011 at 7:58 PM

I don’t know why it should matter who’s leading the mission so long as there are U.S. servicemen or military assets in harm’s way,

exactamundo allah

cmsinaz on May 10, 2011 at 8:01 PM

Oddly enough, I have not heard much about Libya recently

anniekc on May 10, 2011 at 7:54 PM

“What Liberal media?” – Lib

visions on May 10, 2011 at 8:01 PM

How odd that no one cares about the law. This is evidence of a very dangerous presidency. We will rue the day that community organizer Obama was elected. Many of us rue it now, but the “rueness”has just begun.

Mason on May 10, 2011 at 8:01 PM

days, not weeks….or something.

ted c on May 10, 2011 at 8:24 PM

I’m not hearing from my colleagues that they feel the War Powers situation is currently in play because we’re deferring to NATO

IOW, the hell with our troops. Let them eat cake be led by NATO

ted c on May 10, 2011 at 8:26 PM

No problem. This thing will be over in weeks, not months.

Kenosha Kid on May 10, 2011 at 8:34 PM

It’s not war war.

-Whoopi Goldberg

ButterflyDragon on May 10, 2011 at 8:35 PM

Our “Fearless Leader” is leading from behind.

GarandFan on May 10, 2011 at 8:41 PM

I don’t know why it should matter who’s leading the mission so long as there are U.S. servicemen or military assets in harm’s way, but that’s their story and they’re sticking to it.

….astonishingly sickening.

How in the world can anyone with above a double digit IQ say we have turned it over to NATO when we are NATO.
We have launched hundreds of missiles….
………….flown hundreds of sorties…..
…….funded and are training “rebels” on the ground….
………….have a Naval embargo in place
……………..CIA on the ground…..
…………………..and are fully engaged in regime change…..

………….and nobody is interested in getting Congressional approval!!!!!….unbelievable.

It is absolutely incredible how easy the “War is not the Answer” crowd is making it for America to launch a war.

Baxter Greene on May 10, 2011 at 8:44 PM

Obama is a warlord.

Spathi on May 10, 2011 at 8:51 PM

Where is Cindy Sheehan when we need her??

kringeesmom on May 10, 2011 at 8:52 PM

I’d pay to see Obama do a press conference where he’s asked “What is the point of us being in Libya?” then being pressed to answer the question rather than hem and haw before changing the subject.

teke184 on May 10, 2011 at 8:53 PM

“I’m not hearing from my colleagues that they feel the War Powers situation is currently in play because we’re deferring to NATO,” committee chairman Sen. John Kerry (D-MA)

Does this mean if the UN decides to destroy Israel using the US military John F’n Kerry will simply say, “That is OK with me?”

Freddy on May 10, 2011 at 11:34 PM

Just because the drive-by media has moved on, doesn’t mean people have forgotten or become less concerned about participation now in THREE wars. Same as just because the lame stream media fell in love with smooth talking Barry doesn’t mean people will be fooled again.

With eyes wide open, the electorate may actually choose Obama. Republicans have become THAT untrusted. They really need to build some credibility and find a messenger.

exdeadhead on May 10, 2011 at 11:58 PM

Amazing- does the GOP really think that deferring to Obama on this will win them any brownie points from Democrats? A few years down the line if a Republican president makes a move like this the Dems, the media & the anti-war crowd will go berserk. And you’ll never, ever head any Dem politician saying that they’re “comfortable” with the executive authority of it.

Man up, Republicans in power- it’s not about how successful Libya is, it’s about power, it’s about sending US servicemen & women into harms way without any obvious reason to get involved, it’s about spending millions of dollars on a military action with no clear goals and it’s about helping rebels who actually look more like our enemies than our friends. Call Obama on this, make him make his case to Congress and throw those “days not weeks” words back in his face again and again and again. Even go on TV and say, “imagine if President Bush had done this”.

Have they forgotten there’s an election coming up?

Jay Mac on May 11, 2011 at 11:22 AM