Sen. Duckworth Votes To Retain 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF)

My senator Tammy Duckworth joined 85 other senators to defeat repeal of the 2001 AUMF used to attack Afghanistan in the wake of the 911 attacks. Only 9 decent senators voted “No More” to senseless and endless war without Senate approval as required by the Constitution.

After conquering Afghanistan in weeks, presidents Bush, Obama, Trump, and now Biden have used it in perpetuity to wage senseless attacks, big and small, in at least 20 countries.

The AUMF was kept in place by a compliant Senate that 22 years ago abrogated its war making powers. It’s a perfect blank check for US presidents who don’t want to seek permission from the Senate to bomb imagined bad guys all over the world. And it’s perfect cover for cynical senators, like Duckworth, who don’t want their fingerprints of approval on their president’s latest act of murder and mayhem worldwide. If military action goes wrong these Senators will cry “It’s all on the president.”

But in a cynical move to distract the public from retaining its perpetual war card, the Biden administration has approved the Senate moving forward to repeal the 2002 AUMF authorizing our criminal war to depose Saddam Hussein. Since the war ended a decade ago, repealing the 2002 AUMF is a meaningless fig leaf on out-of-control war making.

Senator Duckworth, who parlayed her Iraq war military service to Congress and a possible presidential run, learned nothing from participating in a monstrous criminal war except that promoting war service is good politics.

Duckworth should heed the words of her colleague Rand Paul. He proposed repeal of the 2001 AUMF with this principled message: “Today, I offered the US Senate a chance to repeal the 9/11 2001 Authorization for War to reclaim our constitutional power and send a message to the world that we are a nation of peace. Today, we should have risen above symbolism and repealed the 9/11 authorization for war and shown our respect for the Constitution, our fealty to the rule of law, and our sincere desire that peace, not perpetual war, be our legacy.”

Senator Duckworth, are you listening?

Walt Zlotow became involved in antiwar activities upon entering University of Chicago in 1963. He is current president of the West Suburban Peace Coalition based in the Chicago western suburbs. He blogs daily on antiwar and other issues at

11 thoughts on “Sen. Duckworth Votes To Retain 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF)”

  1. Does she not realize that it was because of AUMF and a lie that she lost her legs. What in the h*ll is she doing??????

  2. Serving in the Iraq War didn’t make Tammy figure out that war is Hell on Earth. She reminds me of the late John McCain who always wanted more and more war and they were both veterans. The only difference is that they were not in the same party.

    1. They were in the same party, just a different wing. That vote was a perfect example. 4 dems and 4 repubs. They didn’t even count noses for this one and make it look closer. That’s what we have in the senate that constitutes anything resembling anti-war.

    2. Unfortunately when American politicians emphasize military experience, you can assume the military industrial complex are on great terms with them.
      They finance them, their staff will have those who previously woked for the industry and after they leave office they more than likely will lobbyists or industry board members with plenty of TV facetime spewing about the next war we need to start/fight.

    3. McCain was a war criminal for dropping bombs, many if not most of which harmed & killed civilians. Glad his plane was shot down. Vietnam should have put him in a re-education camp for life, or for as long as it took to make him see the error of his ways.

  3. It will take a lot more than repealing the 2001 AUMF to send a message to the rest of the world that we are a nation of peace. How about closing all 800+ military bases we have around the world and bring all of our troops home where they belong?

  4. Cowards and imperialists everywhere on Capitol Hill, but no one with any moral and political courage.

  5. What the abject failure to repeal the AUMF does is make it crystal clear to everyone that the U.S. is a war monger world bully, and that it intends to run or take over the world, however you want to look at it. Of course most people won’t get that because they don’t pay attention, but it’s right out there for all to see.

    As to Duckworth, what else is new? She’s just a member of one of the gangs, both of which are pro-U.S. empire war mongers.

  6. When McCarthy prattles on about blank checks, this is the ultimate blank check on which we have already spent 6 trillion dollars. The Ukraine thing is chump change in comparison.

  7. Oct. 30, 2001 Patriot Act — a remedy for an unidentified problem

    PRESIDENT BUSH signed the Patriot Act last week. The new anti-terrorism law has its critics. Some object to the law’s intrusions on civil liberties. They cite the provisions for extended detention, new powers to spy on Americans, a lack of controls on use of information, a greater ability to freeze and seize assets and an overly broad definition of domestic terrorism.

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