US President Donald Trump has vetoed a bipartisan resolution meant to curb his ability to take military action against Iran without congressional approval.
The legislation passed the House of Representatives in March and the Senate in February in response to Mr Trump ordering the killing of top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Iraq.
While the majority of Republicans opposed the effort, multiple Republicans voted in favour of the legislation, issuing a rare cross-party rebuke of Mr Trump’s actions.
Mr Trump called the resolution “very insulting” and accused Democrats of pushing the legislation as a political tool in the November presidential elections.
“This was a very insulting resolution, introduced by Democrats as part of a strategy to win an election on November 3 by dividing the Republican Party. The few Republicans who voted for it played right into their hands,” the President said in a statement.
“Four months ago, I took decisive action to eliminate Qassem Soleimani while he was in Iraq,” Mr Trump said, calling the actions “fully authorised by law”.
“We live in a hostile world of evolving threats, and the Constitution recognises that the President must be able to anticipate our adversaries’ next moves and take swift and decisive action in response,” Mr Trump added. “That’s what I did!”
NEWS: Trump has vetoed the Iran war powers resolution.
He says in a statement:
“This was a very insulting resolution, introduced by Democrats as part of a strategy to win an election on November 3 by dividing the Republican Party.” pic.twitter.com/uohlMs5tZk
— Andrew Desiderio (@AndrewDesiderio) May 6, 2020
The killing of General Soleimani and the subsequent Iranian retaliation – firing rockets at a base housing US soldiers in Iraq – sparked an international crisis, and concerns that the conflict could escalate into an all-out war.
After Iran’s retaliation did not cause any severe injuries to US personnel, Mr Trump declared victory and declined to retaliate against Tehran.