Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Monday | August 26, 2002

Bush afraid of Congress

The Bush Administration has ignored calls to build support for the invasion of Iraq at the UN Security Council. The reasons are obvious -- the US would be hard pressed to pick up a couple of votes, much less the full support of the council.

For the same reasons, the administration is now trying to claim it doesn't need Congressional approval to invade Iraq.

If Bush felt confident he had the votes, he wouldn't be trying to shirk his duties. Congress is the only national branch of government currently occupied by elected officials (Bush and the Supremes were all selected). As such, Congress is the only branch with the moral authority to commit our youth to possible death. Yet in another example of Bush's disdain for democracy, he's hiding behind his legal team's vapid opinions.

The gist: the 1991 Gulf War resolution and the 9-11 resolution give the president all the authority he needs.

Many observers believe Congress would likely pass a Gulf War II resolution, but with restrictions unpalatable to Bush. For example, the resolution could prohibit a strategy of "regime change," limiting US forces to eliminating Iraq's WMD. There's something to this theory.

If Bush were confident he had the votes to endorse his strategy of "regime change", he wouldn't be performing legal gymnastics to avoid facing a potentially hostile Congress. And the dangers to the nation are real, as one Yale law professors points out:

The constitutional structure tries to make war hard to get into, so the president has to show leadership and make his case to the elected representatives. This argument [avoiding Congressional authorization] may permit them to get us into the war, but it won't give them the political support at home and abroad to sustain that effort.

Posted August 26, 2002 01:15 PM | Comments (0)


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