House passes bipartisan amendment barring Trump from striking Iran without congressional approval
The House overwhelmingly passed an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) barring President Trump from going to war with Iran without congressional approval Friday. The amendment, sponsored by Democrat Rep. Ro Khanna and Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz, would prevent federal funds from being used for any conflict in Iran without congressional authorization.
"Congress has spoken in clear terms that the American people do not want another endless war in the Middle East," Khanna told CBS News about the passage of his amendment.
However, a similar amendment to the NDAA failed in the Senate last month, as it received only 50 votes -- ten fewer than the 60 votes needed to pass.
But the amendment might yet make it into the final bill. Khanna told CBS News that his and Gaetz's amendment "has to be a priority of the conference committee." Once the Senate and the House have passed their own versions of the defense spending bill, representatives from both houses will meet in conference committee to hash out a compromise bill.
"Any engagement there is simply foolhardy," Khanna said of potential conflict in Iran.
Tensions between the U.S. and Iran have ratcheted up since President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal last year. Iran shot down an American drone last month over what the U.S. claimed was international waters. Iran also allegedly attacked two tankers in the Strait of Hormuz last month. The U.K. said Thursday that three Iranian vessels had unsuccessfully tried "to impede the passage" of a British commercial vessel transiting the Strait of Hormuz, although Tehran denied it.
Mr. Trump considered an airstrike against Iran after the American drone was shot down, but said he ultimately decided that the casualties would be too high on the Iranian side.
Iran has breached the terms of the Iran deal for a second time this month by enriching uranium beyond the limits set by the agreement, despite Mr. Trump's warning to Iran to "be very careful."