GOP's Mike Lee Blasts Intel Briefers For Telling Senators They Can't Debate War Authorization

Authored by Jason Ditz via AntiWar.com,

After the Trump Administration’s 75-minute briefing to the US Senate on the assassination of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) was deeply critical, calling it the worst briefing he’d gotten in his nine years in the Senate.

Saying the administration’s briefers offered little on the legal or practical justification for the attack, Sen. Lee particularly took umbrage at them warning the Senators that they must not debate the War Powers authorization for a war with Iran.

Republican Senator Mike Lee with Sen. Rand Paul. Image via ABC/Reuters

Those giving the briefing objected to the very idea of the Senate discussing the matter publicly, saying it would “embolden Iran.” Sen. Lee noted that this is a power Constitutionally reserved explicitly for the legislature.

"For them to tell us ... for us to debate and discuss these things on the Senate floor would somehow weaken the American cause and embolden Iran in any other actions, I find very insulting," Lee said, who did not specify to reporters on Capitol Hill which briefer made the assertion.

"It is not acceptable for officials within the executive branch of government -- I don't care if they're with the CIA, the Department of Defense or otherwise -- to come in and tell us that we can't debate and discuss the appropriateness of military intervention against Iran," Lee added. — ABC

Not only did Lee express annoyance that there was no pushback from any of the briefers on telling the Senate not to debate something legally in their purview, but he said that while he’d had problems with the language of Sen. Tim Kaine’s (D-VA) resolution, he has now decided that he will support the resolution, on condition of some amendments.

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Watch a frustrated Sen. Lee slam the briefing to reporters below:

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