Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor on bipartisan support to repeal the AUMFs of 2002 and 1991. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:
Today, the Senate begins debate on a resolution formally repealing the Iraq AUMFs of 2002 and 1991, bringing us another step closer to ending these war authorities and putting these conflicts behind us for good.
I want to note last week’s vote on cloture: 68-27. That is a clear sign of bipartisan support in this chamber.
I hope Republicans will work with us to keep this bill moving forward, because AUMF repeal in the Senate is now a matter of when, not of if. It’s my hope that we can finish our work on repealing these AUMFs as soon as possible.
We’ll have a reasonable amendment process. That said, given last week’s strong vote, there is no reason to let this process drag out. I am encouraged that in the House, members from both sides of the aisle seem to be open to taking action once the Senate passes this resolution. And there are members of the Senate Republican leadership who seem very strongly for the bill. That’s a very good sign.
As always, I thank my colleagues here in the Senate, on both sides of the aisle for supporting this legislation—particularly Senators Kaine and Young, who did an amazing job rounding up support. This has been a dream of Senator Kaine’s for a long time and now it’s coming closer to reality. And I want to thank Chairman Menendez and Ranking Member Risch, and all of the cosponsors of the legislation.
Now, there’s no justification anymore for allowing these Iraq authorizations to remain on the books. Every year they remain in place is another year a future Administration can abuse them to ensnare us in another conflict in the Middle East.
The American people don’t want that. They’re tired of endless wars in the Middle East. We owe it to our service members and our veterans, as well as their families and communities impacted by the war, to repeal these AUMFs as soon as we can.