The following is an archived copy of a message sent to a Discussion List run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.

Views expressed in this archived message are those of the author, not of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.

[Main archive index/search] [List information] [Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[casi] US House gives Bush authority for war with Iraq

[ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ]

House gives Bush authority for war with Iraq

Senate Majority Leader Daschle also on board

Thursday, October 10, 2002 Posted: 4:25 PM EDT (2025 GMT)(accompanying
photo shows anti war protest at Capitol - tm )

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The House of Representatives voted 296-133 Thursday
to give President Bush the authority to go to war to disarm Iraq.

Bush praised the vote, saying, "The House of Representatives has spoken
clearly to the world, and to the United Nations Security Council: the
gathering threat of Iraq must be confronted, fully and finally."

Across the Capitol, a companion measure drew the support of Senate
Majority Leader Tom Daschle and cleared a procedural vote by a wide
margin earlier Thursday.

The resolution authorizes Bush to commit U.S. troops to enforce U.N.
Security Council resolutions requiring Iraq give up weapons of mass
destruction. It requires Bush to declare to Congress either before or
within 48 hours after beginning military action that diplomatic efforts
to enforce those resolutions have failed.

The Bush administration and its supporters in Congress say Iraqi
President Saddam Hussein has kept a stockpile of chemical and biological
weapons in violation of U.N. resolutions and has continued efforts to
develop nuclear weapons. Bush also has argued that Iraq could give
chemical or biological weapons to terrorists. (
l> Ground rules for Iraq inspections)

"Saddam Hussein is seeking the means to murder millions in just a single
moment. He's trying to extend that grip of fear beyond his own borders
and he is consumed with hatred for America," said House Majority Whip
Tom DeLay, R-Texas.

Under the resolution passed Thursday, Bush also must certify that action
against Iraq would not hinder efforts to pursue the al Qaeda terrorist
network that attacked New York and Washington last year. And it requires
the administration to report to Congress on the progress of any war with
Iraq every 60 days.

Most opposition came from Democrats, who were sharply divided on the
issue. Minority Leader Richard Gephardt, D-Missouri, said giving Bush
the authority to attack Iraq could avert war by demonstrating the United
States is willing to confront Saddam Hussein over his obligations to the
United Nations.

"I believe we have an obligation to protect the United States by
preventing him from getting these weapons and either using them himself
or passing them or their components on to terrorists who share his
destructive intent," Gephardt said.

But Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, said Congress and the administration
were being driven by fear.

"It is fear which leads us to war," Kucinich said. "It is fear which
leads us to believe that we must kill or be killed. Fear which leads us
to attack those who have not attacked us. Fear which leads us to ring
our nation in the very heavens with weapons of mass destruction."

Earlier Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle said he'll vote to
give President Bush the authority to use U.S. forces to disarm Iraq,
saying Saddam Hussein is a threat that "cannot be ignored."

Lawmakers are expected to approve a resolution authorizing Bush to use
military force to disarm or depose Saddam Hussein in order to enforce
U.N. disarmament resolutions dating back to the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

The White House says congressional approval will demonstrate American
resolve to the United Nations and to Baghdad as the United Nations
debates the return of weapons inspectors to Iraq.

"It's not an act of war. It is an act to deter war," said Sen. John
Warner, R-Virginia, one of the measure's Senate sponsors.

Daschle, D-South Dakota, had expressed reservations about a possible
U.S. attack on Iraq, and he was not part of the agreement reached last
week with the White House on a proposed resolution.

He said the resolution before Congress gives Bush "extraordinary
authority," and he urged the White House to move "in a way that avoids
making a dangerous situation even worse." But he said Iraq's pursuit of
nuclear weapons could give it the power to dominate the Persian Gulf

"The threat posed by Saddam Hussein may not be imminent. But it is real.
It is growing. And it cannot be ignored," Daschle said.

Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott said Bush has listened to Congress,
U.S. allies and the United Nations, and is prepared to find a peaceful

"But unless we make it clear that he is committed and we are committed
and the United Nations is committed, this problem will not go away,"
said Lott, R-Mississippi. "It is serious, and it is imminent. It doesn't
take but one person with a small container to bring very dangerous
weapons of mass destruction into this country."

Sen. Robert Byrd, D-West Virginia, has argued the resolution would give
the White House too much power and tried to amend the resolution to
limit Bush's authority to one year. The amendment was defeated on a
66-31 vote.

"We ought to pause here and wonder if John Parker -- Capt. John Parker
and his minutemen -- wonder if they fought on the green at Lexington for
this piece of rag, this so-called resolution," Byrd said.

Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
To unsubscribe, visit
To contact the list manager, email
All postings are archived on CASI's website:

[Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]