Alaska’s US senators split on curbing Trump’s power to attack Iran

The underside of the U.S. Capitol dome, as viewed from the Rotunda. (Liz Ruskin/Alaska Public Media)

Sen. Lisa Murkowski was one of eight Republicans who crossed the aisle to pass a resolution Thursday that restricts President Trump’s ability to attack Iran.

The Senate’s Iran War Powers Resolution would require Trump to get the permission of Congress before launching a military action, unless the action was in defense of “imminent attack.”

Murkowski, in a written statement, said the resolution doesn’t restrict Trump’s ability to defend U.S. troops. The president still has substantial powers, Murkowski said, but the Constitution gives Congress the authority to declare war.

Sen. Dan Sullivan voted with most Republicans against the resolution.

“He strongly opposes any attempt to undermine the President’s lawful authority as Commander in Chief to protect American troops and installations, and preserve America’s security interests in the region,” Sullivan’s spokesman said by email.

The resolution passed the Senate 55 to 45. That’s not a large enough margin to overturn a presidential veto.