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Unauthorized? The 2001 AUMF and Iran

  • G50 Dirksen Senate Office Building (map)

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Amid “maximum pressure,” the seizure of a British-flagged tanker, and the downing of a U.S. drone, tensions with Iran are boiling. As the current standoff threatens to escalate into open hostilities, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee called a hearing to review authorizations for the use of military force (AUMFs).

Their enquiry may have raised more questions than answers. The administration’s expert witnesses conceded that neither the 2001 nor 2002 AUMF applies to conflict with Iran. However, they only acknowledged this concession “to date” leaving open a loophole the size of the future. Meanwhile, several committee members who had voted for the 2001 authorization to target those responsible for the terrorist attacks on September 11 expressed surprise and concern that it might be applied to Iran.

To examine these and other important questions though a nonpartisan lens, the Charles Koch Institute invites you to join us for a Senate-side luncheon to discuss executive-legislative relations, constitutional war powers, and the applicability of the 2001 AUMF to future conflicts.

Join us Wednesday, August 7th, for an expert panel featuring three distinguished legal minds working at the busy intersection of constitutional law and national security. Stephen Vladeck joins us from the University of Texas’s School of Law, Gene Healy of the Cato Institute, and Heather Brandon-Smith of FCNL and Georgetown Law contribute to this important conversation.

Wednesday, August 7
From 12:00—1:15 PM
Dirksen Senate Office Building G50
Lunch and discussion