Congressional Authority to Limit U.S. Military Operations in Iraq [Updated April 24, 2007]   [open pdf - 280KB]

"This report begins by providing background and discusses constitutional provisions allocating war powers between Congress and the President, and presents a historical overview of relevant court cases. Next, it discusses Congress's power to rescind prior military authorization and the consequences of such a repeal. Evaluating relevant jurisprudence and the pertinent provisions of the War Powers Resolution, it concludes that the repeal of the AUMF, absent the further denial of appropriations or the establishment of a specific deadline for troop withdrawal, would likely have little, if any, legal effect on the continuation of combat operations. Finally, the report discusses Congress's ability to limit funding for military operations in Iraq. It examines relevant court cases and prior measures taken by Congress to restrict military operations, as well as possible alternative avenues to fund operations in the event Congress were to restrict appropriations for the war. There follows a summary of measures passed by both Houses in the Supplemental Appropriations Act, Fiscal Year 2007, H.R. 1591, related to the redeployment of U.S. troops from Iraq. The report concludes by providing a brief analysis of arguments that might be brought to bear on the question of Congress's authority to limit the availability of troops to serve in Iraq. Although not beyond debate, such a restriction appears to be within Congress's authority to allocate resources for military operations."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL33837
Public Domain
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