February 01, 2007

Can the US Congress cut funds for Dubya's 'surge'?

According to a new report from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, the answer is Yes.

In sum, it seems that under the constitutional allocation of powers Congress has the prerogative of placing a legally binding condition on the use of appropriations to prevent the deployment of additional U.S. armed forces to Iraq. Such a prohibition seems directly related to the allocation of resources at the Presidentís disposal, and would therefore not appear to interfere impermissibly with the Presidentís ability to exercise command and control over the U.S. armed forces. Although not beyond question, such a prohibition would arguably survive any challenge as an incident both of Congressís war power and of its power over appropriations.

This is just the CRS' opinion, of course, but they've had a pretty good record of figuring out how the courts are likely to rule on federal government actions. Those who say that Congress can't limit Dubya's power to commit troops and money to Iraq should just give it up.

You can read the full CRS report here [PDF file].

Via Secrecy News.

Posted by Magpie at February 1, 2007 09:20 AM | Iraq | Technorati links |

Though as a couple friends of mine have become fond of pointing out lately, we're not technically, legally speaking, at war. There was no declaration of war, something that Hussein could have responded to in theory by surrendering.

So perhaps the question is whether or not Congress can defund a 'police action,' or whatever it is that the kids are calling it these days. I'm pretty sure they can, but still.

Posted by: natasha at February 1, 2007 10:44 AM