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Ron Paul: Libya Airstrikes Unconstitutional

Ron Paul: Libya Airstrikes Unconstitutional – Only Congress Can Declare War

Mr. Speaker: I rise to introduce a resolution expressing the sense of the Congress that the President is required to obtain in advance specific statutory authorization for the use of United States Armed Forces in response to civil unrest in Libya. As many in the administration, Congress, and elsewhere clamor for the president to initiate military action to support those seeking to overthrow the Libyan regime, Congress sits by, as usual, pretending that Article I, Section 8 of the US Constitution does not exist. According to this long-ignored section, ‘‘The Congress shall have Power To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water.”

This is black letter law, not some aspirational statement by our Founders. Their intent was indisputably clear: Congress alone, not the Executive Branch, has the authority and the obligation to declare war if hostilities are to be initiated against a foreign state that has not attacked the United States.

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