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Obama to Congress: Constitution Gives Me Authority to Send Troops to Iraq

President Barack Obama told Congress Thursday that he has the authority on his own to send troops to Iraq indefinitely under the Constitution, Roll Call reports.  

“These forces will remain in Iraq until the security situation becomes such that they are no longer needed,” Obama told lawmakers of his decision to send 300 military advisers there.  

“This action is being undertaken in coordination with the Government of Iraq and has been directed consistent with my responsibility to protect U.S. citizens both at home and abroad, and in furtherance of U.S. national security and foreign policy interests, pursuant to my constitutional authority to conduct U.S. foreign relations and as Commander in Chief and Chief Executive,” Obama wrote in a letter to Congress.  

Obama does not use either the 2001 authorization to use military force (AUMF) after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks nor does he cite the 2002 Iraq AUMF as justification. Both acts of Congress remain in effect today because they have no expiration date and have not been repealed.