Ryan Costello, Policy Director for the National Iranian American Council, issued the following statement on the passage of the resolution (H.Con.Res. 83) from Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) clarifying that President Trump does not have authorization for war with Iran:
“Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Rep. Slotkin, Rep. Jim McGovern, Rep. Eliot Engel and all Representatives who voted for the resolution today deserve tremendous credit for taking quick and decisive action to clarify Trump does not have authority to ratchet up to a full-blown war with Iran.
“The Trump administration has lied about its assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani from the start, painting a picture of an imminent threat without evidence. Sadly, many – but not all – of Trump’s Republican allies blindly accepted the administration’s propaganda and engaged in a divisive campaign to distort the truth. The strike on Soleimani was a deliberate provocation ordered from Mar-a-Lago while Congress was kept in the dark. The vote today helps wrestle back war authorities from a reckless executive that has proven it cannot be trusted on Iran policy or any national security file.
“The fight will now turn to the Senate, where Sen. Tim Kaine is pushing his war powers resolution and gaining support by the day. The House of Representatives, however, should not rest given the profound stakes. We urge the House to pass Rep. Khanna’s No War Against Iran Act (H.R. 5543), which would bar funding for unauthorized war with Iran and clarify that Congress has not passed a war authorization. It passed the House in a strong bipartisan vote via amendment over the summer. Moreover, we encourage the House to pass Rep. Barbara Lee’s bill (H.R. 2456) to end the 2002 war authorization against Saddam Hussein’s defunct regime that the administration has bizarrely cited as an authorization for its strike on an Iranian general.
“President Trump must halt his administration’s lies, open diplomatic channels with Iran and seek to return to the nuclear deal. Failure to do so risks a war that would devastate the region and put the American people further away from peace.”