Paul Gambit Poised to Force Vote on ISIS (Video)
Sen. Rand Paul scored a victory Thursday in forcing an end-of-session debate on authorizing force against Islamic State militants.
The Kentucky Republican, and potential 2016 presidential candidate, used a legislative gambit to press the issue — which the Obama administration has been reluctant to specifically engage with Congress on. Paul first tried to attach a Declaration of War against the terror group also known as ISIS or ISIL to an unrelated water bill at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Paul agreed to refrain from offering his amendment after the panel scheduled a Monday hearing on the issue, where Secretary of State John Kerry may testify. The hearing will be followed by a classified briefing, with a markup and vote on an Authorization for the Use of Military Force on Wednesday.
“I think the most important responsibility of a legislator is to vote yay or nay on whether or not we are sending our young men and women to war and I think we have been derelict in that duty. … The president, I think in his arrogance has assumed he doesn’t even need to ask,” Paul said when leaving the markup meeting. “Today we forced the issue and next week we’ve been promised a hearing on this as well as a vote on this and I am satisfied with that.”