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View Diary: Tammy Duckworth on Syria (295 comments)

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  •  What I'm saying is restricted to the (1+ / 0-)
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    Aspe4

    Constitutional aspect of this. The rule of law part.

    Bush did more to remain within the rule of law than Obama is currently doing.

    And I don't like AUMFs or the way we deal with Presidential powers over military actions. I think they're way out of line. And I think the 2002 AUMF gave away too much of Congress' power--I agree with Robert Byrd on that one.

    But Congress was in session, there was a debate and a vote and authorization given. As opposed to the President just deciding while Congress was in recess that he should go bomb Syria without doing anything but informing Congress that he was going to do it.

    Remember that the first media coverage of this was from someone in congress who remained anonymous, who said that the WH "wasn't seeking permission. It was just to inform."

    To me, that speaks volumes.

    And that's what's comparable. The legal, political, Constitutional framework of how we decide on military action. And Obama is doing a worse job with that even than Bush did. So far. I hope he changes course soon.

    The party of Kennedy is also the party of Eastland. The party of Javits is also the party of Goldwater. Where is our party? Where is the political party that will make it unnecessary to march on Washington?

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 01:30:05 PM PDT

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    •  If fabricating 'evidence' and (1+ / 0-)
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      417els

      artificially stoking fear by raising the terror watch to Orange every time that 'evidence' was presented is playing by the rules then, yup, Bush was way more in line than Obama.  

      If Obama feels strongly about this, can you blame him for being wary of the current Congress and its ability to act honorably?

      •  It's nothing to do with how a particular President (2+ / 0-)
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        wonmug, native

        feels about a particular Congress. You respect the other branches and the division of powers. The reason you do that is that, if you don't, you might set a precedent for all who come after, a precedent which could possibly alter our system of government in a bad way. As Bush arguably did for Obama. Obama would probably never consider going it alone to this extent if the last President hadn't steamrolled Congress and the UN to the extent he did. And so it goes.

        Next President, whether it's a Republican or a Democrat, will inherit vastly expanded powers. This does not follow partisan lines. And the country suffers for it, whether the man in the Oval Office--or the woman--wears a red or blue jersey.

        The party of Kennedy is also the party of Eastland. The party of Javits is also the party of Goldwater. Where is our party? Where is the political party that will make it unnecessary to march on Washington?

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 05:09:11 PM PDT

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        •  It isn't precident breaking (1+ / 0-)
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          native

          Truman bypassed Congress to go to war in Korea. Johnson and Nixon bypassed on Vietnam. Pappy Bush bypassed them on Panama. Clinton bypassed them on Kosovo.  

          •  So you think Bush did not dangerously expand (1+ / 0-)
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            koNko

            the powers of the Presidency?

            The party of Kennedy is also the party of Eastland. The party of Javits is also the party of Goldwater. Where is our party? Where is the political party that will make it unnecessary to march on Washington?

            by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sat Aug 31, 2013 at 06:35:57 AM PDT

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            •  I'm not sure I get your question. (0+ / 0-)

              Plenty of presidents before Obama used military force without Congressional approval. For Obama to do it would not be game changing. Presidents had this power long before Bush came along.

              Under the War Powers Act, the president has 90 days after introducing troops into hostilities to obtain congressional approval of that action. This dates back to irritation over the way Johnson and Nixon handled Vietnam.

              I realize that I am in the minority here but I am not knee-jerk opposed to the action Obama is considering as long as he waits for the UN Inspectors' report. I am not okay with a world where chemical weapons are fair game. That actually does have long term implications for us. As a side note, I'm not okay with the world shooting itself up either, but, sadly, there is no international law against that.

              To be honest, I am completely stunned by the sudden faith this community has in Congress given its track record since Obama got elected. I guess we don't support any of Obama's attempts to use his powers to go around them on gun control or judicial appointments either.

          •  And also, I don't think any of those decisions (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            koNko

            were good ones.

            The party of Kennedy is also the party of Eastland. The party of Javits is also the party of Goldwater. Where is our party? Where is the political party that will make it unnecessary to march on Washington?

            by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sat Aug 31, 2013 at 06:43:37 AM PDT

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            •  I'm not arguing the merits of those actions (1+ / 0-)
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              highacidity

              simply stating the reality that what Obama is proposing is not new.

              •  It was arguably ill-advised in all those cases (0+ / 0-)

                for the Executive to proceed alone.
                If the Executive had taken the decisions to Congress, it's possible, though not certain, that some of those decisions would not have been made. And in at least one case (Vietnam) our country would have been far better off if they had not been made.

                To answer your other comment here, the President's ability to unleash our military force, which at this point is incomparable, is a power arguably unlike any other; or, to put it more accurately, the power of the Executive Branch to kill, whether through war, non-war military actions, or kill lists, is the most dire of its powers and the most necessary to restrain if one is interested in maintaining a country that obeys the rule of law and respects the rights of all citizens (including those who have little power).  The Founders knew that. It's one of the points on which they and I--and apparently, a majority of our citizens, even in this dark time--agree.

                The party of Kennedy is also the party of Eastland. The party of Javits is also the party of Goldwater. Where is our party? Where is the political party that will make it unnecessary to march on Washington?

                by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sat Aug 31, 2013 at 08:47:33 AM PDT

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