Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Personnel Subcommittee, today released the following statement on the crisis with Iran:
“I am greatly relieved that Iran’s retaliatory missile strikes did not result in casualties to U.S. service members caught in the middle of these hostilities. My thoughts are with U.S. troops and diplomats in the region and their families.
“This crisis was unnecessary and avoidable. Without seeking congressional authorization or presenting a clear strategy, President Trump brought us to the brink of war with Iran. Furthermore, President Trump’s actions have severely damaged our relationship with Iraq, which has called for expelling U.S. troops, an action that would create chaos and enable ISIS to regain power. Make no mistake—President Trump has made us less safe.
“It is not clear that this crisis is over. President Trump must not take further military action unless he notifies Congress immediately and obtains authorization based on a clear explanation of the goals of military action, our adversaries, and the countries where our service members would be sent into conflict. The United States must embrace diplomacy and work with our allies in the region to de-escalate this situation and forge a lasting peace.
“Congress should pass my War Powers Reform Resolution, which would repeal the 2001 and 2002 Authorizations for the Use of Military Force, and restrain President Trump or any future president from using open-ended authorizations to unilaterally engage in military actions. Congress must assert its authority before it’s too late.”