Senate votes to rein in Trump on Iran

Eight Senate Republicans vote with Democrats on resolution to rein in President Trump's ability to take military action against Iran.

Ben Ariel ,

United States Capitol
United States Capitol

Eight Senate Republicans voted with all 47 Democrats on Thursday to rein in President Trump's ability to take military action against Iran, The Hill reports.

Senators voted 55-45 on the resolution, spearheaded by Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), which would require Trump to pull any US troops from military hostilities against Iran within 30 day unless he gets congressional approval for the military actions.

The rebuke comes just a week after senators voted to acquit Trump in his impeachment trial.

GOP senators who supported the resolution argued it was about clawing back some of the warmaking authority Congress has ceded to the executive branch in recent decades, and not a personal slight directed at Trump.

That group comprised Senator Mike Lee (Utah), Rand Paul (Kentucky), Susan Collins (Maine), Todd Young (Indiana), Jerry Moran (Kansas), Lamar Alexander (Tennessee), Bill Cassidy (Lousiana) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska).

"The Senate just sent a clear shot across the bow -- a bipartisan majority of senators don't want the president waging war without congressional approval," Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer said after the vote, according to AFP.

The resolution will head to the Democratic-led House of Representatives, which passed a similar text last month following the elimination of top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani.

Democrats have been critical of Trump’s order to eliminate Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Iraq last week, claiming he should have consulted with Congress beforehand.

The White House has pledged that the president will veto the resolution if it reaches his desk, arguing that it “fails to account for present reality.”

“This joint resolution is untimely and misguided. Its adoption by Congress could undermine the ability of the United States to protect American citizens whom Iran continues to seek to harm,” the Office of Management and Budget said, according to The Hill.

Trump urged Republicans to reject the resolution in a pair of tweets, arguing that “Democrats are only doing this as an attempt to embarrass the Republican Party.”

“It is very important for our Country’s SECURITY that the United States Senate not vote for the Iran War Powers Resolution. We are doing very well with Iran and this is not the time to show weakness. Americans overwhelmingly support our attack on terrorist Soleimani,” he added. “If my hands were tied, Iran would have a field day. Sends a very bad signal.”