WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, following the proposal of President Obama’s draft legislation to authorize the use of military force against ISIL, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Veterans’ Affairs’ Committee and member of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee, released the following statement:
“I applaud the President’s draft authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) – a starting point for defining and limiting the American military fight against ISIL. I agree that ISIL is a threat – as demonstrated anew by its tragic, horrific murders – that should be degraded and destroyed. I am hopeful for bipartisan cooperation in articulating an authorization for this new use of military force, which cannot be done under existing authority. There remain grave issues still to be resolved – such as clarifying restrictions against use of American combat ground troops, establishing the scope and scale of U.S. military operations, and sunsetting obsolete authorities. Ultimately, U.S. military force alone will not suffice to stop this terrorist threat, which requires a local and regional response, both military and political.
Congress must also consider how Administrations have used prior AUMF authority. We financed the last two wars with credit that future generations will have to pay. Our nation should not adopt a strategy it cannot support and sustain. Congress must commit to keep faith with all who have courageously served and sacrificed in our armed forces, and redouble our efforts to honor and care for all veterans.”