WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement after the Committee voted this morning to approve in a 13-8 vote a bill to repeal the 1991 and 2002 authorizations for the use of military force (AUMFs). The bipartisan legislation seeks to formally end the authorizations for the Gulf and Iraq wars. The bill moves next to the Floor for consideration by the full Senate.
“As we begin our work in the 118th Congress, today’s approval of legislation to repeal the 1991 and 2002 authorizations for the use of military force against Iraq makes clear the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will continue to pursue a robust agenda to help guide our nation’s foreign policy and the operation of the State Department.
“AUMFs are the most solemn responsibility of this Committee, and our duty is not just to pass them, but to exercise vigilance as to how they are used and assess when it is time to declare them obsolete. Today’s vote asserts the congressional prerogative to determine how administrations — current and future ones — justify the use of military force. These two AUMFs are outdated, do not address current threats to U.S. interests, and should not be used to justify large-scale use of military force. Their repeal is in the U.S. national interest, and in the interest of our strategic partnership with Iraq and the region.
“I would like to commend Senators Kaine and Young for their commitment and leadership on this issue, and I look forward to continue our work to put this important bill on the President’s desk as soon as possible.”