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Golden Seeks More Congressional Control Over Use Of Military Force

David Sharp
Associated Press
In this April 27, 2019, file photo, U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine, speaks during a ceremony for a Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyer named for former President Lyndon Baines Johnson in Bath, Maine.

Maine Democratic Congressman Jared Golden is co-sponsoring legislation that would repeal past authorizations for the use of military force and create a new resolution giving congress more control. 

Golden says there are resolutions authorizing presidents to order the use of military force going back to the 1950s, none of them an actual declaration of war.  As a member of the U.S. Marine Corps, he fought in Afghanistan under one of those authorizations and says it's time they all be repealed and replaced.  

“It’s time the American people to demand that of Congress, and for congress to exercise what I refer to as its constitutional obligation or responsibility," he says.

The legislation has bipartisan sponsorship and support, but Golden says passage may depend on agreement on a new resolution governing the use of military force. Past efforts have failed because of partisan fights over time limits, geographical scope and over which military forces can be activated. 

“It has to be bipartisan. We have to work with the White House no matter who the President is," he says. "But I think we have a President right now who is open to having this debate into seeing a Congress that's more active in deciding when and where we engage our service members overseas.”