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Congress Dropped the Ball on a Dangerous War Authorization

Senate Takes Action to Reform AUMF

We are deeply disappointed to learn that the repeal of the Iraq War Authorization (2002 AUMF) was eliminated from the final version of this year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). 

By way of background: Congress passed the 2002 Iraq War AUMF to authorize military force against Saddam Hussein’s regime. The legal justification for attacking Iraq was that the Saddam Hussein regime was in breach of U.N. Security Council resolutions by possessing weapons of mass destruction. As the world later learned, this justification had no basis in fact. 

The Iraq War is now over. Repealing this outdated and dangerous war authorization has widespread, bipartisan support. It’s shameful that a minority of decision-makers negotiated its removal from the NDAA behind closed doors.

However, we will continue to fight for an end to dangerous war authorizations that put our military families at risk and demand a return of war powers to Congress. We call on Congressional leadership who support the 2002 AUMF repeal to hold a floor vote on a standalone bill and get this done. 

Urge Senate Leadership To Take Action

Two weeks ago, our AUMF Repeal Advocacy Team met with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s staff to explain why this repeal is important to military families. One by one, team members shared their stories to illustrate how repeal makes our community safer, and how the repeal would reassert Congress’s Article I constitutional duty to determine if and when the United States goes to war.

We connected with Senator Schumer’s office because the Senate still has the opportunity to vote to repeal the 2002 Iraq War Authorization in a standalone bill. S.J. Res 10 repeals the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force against the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq

The House voted to repeal the 2002 Iraq AUMF in 2021, and President Biden also supports repeal. Majority Leader Schumer has committed to bringing the bipartisan bill to repeal the 2002 Iraq AUMF to a vote. This is an important moment to hold him to his promise. 

We know we have the bipartisan votes to pass this repeal but our window of opportunity is closing as this legislative session comes to a close. Now is the time for Majority Leader Schumer to schedule the vote!

Take two minutes to send an email urging a floor vote using the form below. Military families deserve transparency, and a floor vote will make clear which lawmakers oppose this common sense repeal.

Text of the Letter

Click “Start Writing” above and the form will auto populate the following letter for you to customize:

I am writing to urge Senator Schumer to schedule S.J. Res. 10 for a vote and repeal the 2002 Iraq AUMF.

As a military spouse, my family is directly impacted by our country’s decisions over war and peace. Putting our troops into harm’s way should be a deliberative and transparent process. But right now, the 2002 Iraq AUMF leaves too much leeway for a President from either party to endanger our troops without any public debate. If my loved one is going to be called upon to demonstrate the furthest bounds of their service, we deserve to be confident in the necessity and justness of that decision.

I hope you will follow through on your public commitment to schedule this bill for a Senate floor vote. We need bipartisan action to affirm the role and duty of Congress to declare war, and do better for our military and their families.

SFI 2002 Iraq AUMF Resources

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