On March 18, responding to a request from the Arab League, President Obama ordered American warplanes to begin bombing Libya.
And America was suddenly involved in a third war against an Arab country. Which we still are, although now only in a support role for NATO forces.
But are we there legally and constitutionally? I think the answer is clearly not.
Yes, under extraordinary circumstances a president can initiate military action without waiting for Congress to act. But, even in those cases, under the War Powers Act, the president must come before Congress within 90 days for authorization.
Even though we reach that deadline four days from now, the Obama White House has refused to act – insisting it has kept Congress informed, instead. Maybe so. But informing Congress is not the same as seeking and received authorization from Congress.
The truth is, Obama could probably get the support of Congress if he asked for it. But, by not asking, he is running the risk of losing all support for the operation in Libya by engaging in an illegal war.
Yesterday, John Boehner warned President Obama he would soon be in violation of the War Powers.
I hate to say it, but Boehner’s right.
That’s my parting shot for today.