Nothing in the Constitution about 'consulting' Congress about waging war 

Our own Byron York earlier noted the statement by House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, on the Libyan intervention:

"The President is the commander-in-chief, but the Administration has a responsibility to define for the American people, the Congress, and our troops what the mission in Libya is, better explain what America’s role is in achieving that mission, and make clear how it will be accomplished. Before any further military commitments are made, the Administration must do a better job of communicating to the American people and to Congress about our mission in Libya and how it will be achieved.”

What is missing from Boehner's statement is any demand that Congress have a real say in the decision to wage this war.

Although the Speaker may have been involved in Obama's deliberations -- and Byron's sources suggest he was less involved than Obama's war announcement implied -- Boehner does not (title aside) speak for the entire House of Representatives. His assent alone is no substitute for the constitutionally required authorization of the third war that we've just gotten into.

And as for the suggestion that it is sufficient for Obama to "consult" with Congress about starting a war with Libya, here is the authority we're working under:

The Congress shall have Power...[t]o declare War....

I don't see anything about "consulting" Congress in there. Nor did James Madison. Nor did Barack Obama, just a few years ago, as Tim Carney pointed out the other day

About The Author

David Freddoso

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David Freddoso came to the Washington Examiner in June 2009, after serving for nearly two years as a Capitol Hill-based staff reporter for National Review Online. Before writing his New York Times bestselling book, The Case Against Barack Obama, he spent three years assisting Robert Novak, the legendary Washington... more
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