Tags: Bob Corker | war power | authorization | congress

Sen. Bob Corker: Obama's War Authorization Request a 'Starting Point'

By    |   Sunday, 15 February 2015 12:40 PM

The threat of terrorism from ISIS and other entities will be going on for years, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker said Sunday, so the fight will take take a "long commitment by all of those in the free world" to undermine that.

Congress will begin a "robust" set of hearings on President Barack Obama's authorization request to fight the Islamic State, the Tennessee Republican told CBS "Face the Nation"host Bob Schieffer, but he acknowledged the fight will be difficult.

"It is our goal to have a process that determines the threat to our homeland," said Corker. Further, there is a great deal of skepticism about Obama's strategy, especially in Syria, about the administration's commitment to dealing with ISIS.

"That creates a lot of concern, so we are going to have the opportunity to look at that, to look at what is happening in Iraq and then hopefully, shortly thereafter, create language that can, in fact, pass muster in both houses of Congress," Corker said.

But for now, the threat is "metastasizing," said Corker, and although the focus is on Iraq and Syria, "they are in multiple other countries."

He pointed out that this weekend, the leader of Nigeria "tried to establish a relationship between ISIS and Boko Haram there,"and there is concern about events in Copenhagen, where attacks this weekend may have been inspired by an ISIS-linked attack on French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo in January, officials said Sunday.

On Sunday, police shot dead a gunman on Sunday who killed two civilians and injured five police officers during two separate attacks in the Danish capital Saturday. Denmark's spy chief Jens Madsen said the gunman was known to the intelligence services prior to the shooting and probably acted alone, but did not elaborate further.

"Not only are these groups able to hold territory like they are doing in Syria and Iraq, but they are also able to enlist people in countries where they aren't to take on terrorist activities like we are seeing," said Corker. "So this threat is very different, and that is why it is important for us to fully, fully understand the threat, understand how we are going to go forward and I think very important because this is going to be going on for numbers of years."

He does think it is important for Congress to come behind an authorization that is "prudent," and the one Obama submitted is a "beginning point."

Corker also noted the looming deadline for funding the Department of Homeland Security, saying that he believes that the situation will be resolved.

The House passed legislation funding the department, while stripping money for President Barack Obama's executive action on immigration. The bill, however, did not pass muster in the Senate, where Democrats had also blocked its passage on three occasions.

But now, Congress is on a 10-day recess, which will leave lawmakers just a few days to come up with an agreement before Feb. 27, when the current funding arrangement expires.

"I would be the first to say when we have a department whose mission is to protect the homeland, especially in these times, we need to fund it and hopefully Congress over the next period of time will figure out a way to go forward, but it needs to be funded," said Corker. "We do not need to leave our nation in a situation with the type of threats that we have with an agency that is not working at full steam. So it needs to be resolved and I think it will be."

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The threat of terrorism from ISIS and other entities will be going on for years, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker said Sunday, so the fight will take take a long commitment by all of those in the free world to undermine that. Congress will begin a ...
Bob Corker, war power, authorization, congress
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2015-40-15
Sunday, 15 February 2015 12:40 PM
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