U.S. House Votes to Repeal 2002 Iraq War Authorization

The United States House of Representatives on June 17 passed a legislation to repeal the 2002 war powers resolution that authorized the use of military force in Iraq.

The House voted 268 to 161 to repeal the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) in Iraq that authorizes the president to use the military to “defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq.”

“After nearly 20 years of fighting for this, we’re finally one step closer to ending forever wars,” Representative Barbara Lee, who introduced the bill, said.

The White House said in a statement last June 14 that it supports the repeal “as the United States has no ongoing military activities the rely solely on the 2002 AUMF as a domestic legal basis, and repeal of the 2002 AUMF would likely have minimal impact on current military operations.”

The bill now heads to the Senate, where Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said that he plans to bring the repeal for a vote this session.

“It’s been nearly 10 years since this particular authorization has been cited as a primary justification for military — for a military operation. It no longer serves a vital purpose in our fight against violent extremists in the Middle East,” Schumer said ahead of the House vote.

The House previously voted for the bill last year and in 2019, but it was never taken up in the Senate, which was controlled by Republicans at the time as the administration of former President Donald Trump opposed the bill.

The 2002 AUMF gave clearance to former President George W. Bush’s plans to invade Iraq.

The Trump administration also partly used the 2002 AUMF to legally justify the drone strike that killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in 2020.

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