May 22, 2019

Udall, Murphy to Seek Vote to Prevent Unconstitutional Iran War in Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Senators propose amendment based on Udall’s legislation to ensure Congressional vote prior to war with Iran

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) are calling for a vote in a Senate Foreign Relations Committee markup on legislation to prevent an unconstitutional, unauthorized war with Iran, as the administration continues to escalate tensions in the region. Udall and Murphy have filed an amendment to H.R. 31 that is based on Udall’s Prevention of Unconstitutional War with Iran Act, bipartisan legislation to prohibit the United States from expending funds which could lead to war with Iran without express approval from Congress, as required by the Constitution.

“Starting a war with Iran would be a catastrophe worse than Iraq," said Udall. "But the Trump administration is blindly repeating the mistakes of the past, escalating tensions with no plan to diffuse them or make any diplomatic progress. And indeed, some members of the Trump foreign policy team seem to be openly hoping to provoke Iran into war. Fortunately, Congress is a co-equal branch that has the sole authority to declare war – so we don’t have to sit around and watch this administration spiral us into another endless conflict in the Middle East, built on the failed ashes of the Iraq playbook. But stopping war will take real courage and action from Congress. Today, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has a chance to show that we’ve learned the lessons of Iraq, and that we are stepping up to take back our constitutional authority.”

“Trump may not want a war with Iran, but he’s certainly put us on a path to get there by mistake. Congress must remind this administration that they do not have legal authorization to launch a war against Iran without our consent and that no one else is responsible but Trump for putting us on this blind campaign of escalation with no off-ramp. War with Iran at this point would be illegal and an utter disaster that makes our nation less safe,” said Murphy.

In addition to Udall and Murphy, the Prevention of Unconstitutional War with Iran Act is co-sponsored by U.S. Senators Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Robert Casey (D-Penn.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.).