September 14, 2019

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Observes the 18 Years Since Her No Vote on Blank Check for War Authorization

Washington, D.C. – In recognition of the 18 years since Congresswoman Barbara Lee was the sole “no” vote on the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) on September 14, 2001, Rep. Lee released the following statement:

“I voted against the 2001 AUMF because I believed it was a blank check for endless war. Sadly, this turned out to be true. A recent report from the Congressional Research Service showed that the 2001 AUMF has been used as a justification for military force 41 times in 18 countries – and those are the unclassified actions. We cannot escape the reality that every president since 9/11 has used the overly broad 2001 AUMF to justify endless war, including in Afghanistan as well as other conflicts around the globe. 

“Eighteen years later, Congress continues to abdicate its constitutional responsibility to debate and vote on matters of war and peace while young men and women continue to risk their lives for this country. But we have made incredible progress – earlier this summer, a majority of members supported my efforts to sunset the 2001 AUMF in the Fiscal Year 2020 Department of Defense 2020 Appropriations bill.

“We can’t keep kicking the can down the road. Congress owes it to the American people – and our brave men and women in uniform – to do our job and repeal this blank check for war.”