The U.S. military launched airstrikes against government forces in Syria today.
Under the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution, Congress has the sole authority to decide when U.S. military force will be used if the U.S. has not been attacked. Congress never authorized Trump to attack Syria, which has not attacked the U.S.
Rep. Ted Lieu [D-CA] stated: “If true, this is FRICKIN ILLEGAL. Trump does not have Congressional authorization to attack Syria, a country that has not attacked US.”
In January, Obama deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said part of why Obama didn’t attack Syria unilaterally – without Congress’ approval – was fear of impeachment. “[W]e had no domestic legal basis. We actually had Congress warning us against taking action without congressional authorization, which we interpreted as the president could face impeachment,” Rhodes said. “They laid down markers that this would not be constitutional. If we got drawn into a conflict in Syria without congressional authorization, without international authorization, without international support, you can see very clearly how that could have completely derailed this entire presidency.”
When Trump attacked Syria in April without Congressional authorization, Sen. Tim Kaine [D-VA] said it was “unlawful” and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi [D-CA] and Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin [D-IL] said any escalation would require the approval of Congress.
Urge Members of Congress to say that Trump’s Syria strike is illegal and impeachable by signing our petition at MoveOn.