Reading Room

New Bills Seek to Prevent War on North Korea

Friday, October 27, 2017
Posted by Brendan Phillips

A recent pair of bills constraining President Trump’s ability to engage in armed hostilities with North Korea have been introduced last week to the House and Senate in the form of H.R.4140 and S.2016, respectively.

The “No Unconstitutional Strike Against North Korea” act utilizes the Legislature’s constitutional power to appropriate funds as a means to ensure President Trump must seek Congressional approval before the use of armed forces, barring the exception of a first strike against the United States by North Korea, or their use to rescue or remove US personnel.

Under H.R.4140 and S.2016, none of the funds appropriated, or otherwise made available to the Department of Defense, or any other federal department or agency, can be used for the purposes of a military strike, or introduction of armed forces into hostilities with North Korea, unless a formal declaration of war has been issued, or authorization has been issued pursuant the requirements of the War Powers Resolution.

The President has, on numerous occasions, exacerbated tensions with North Korea, rather than pursue a peaceful diplomatic solution.

Military experts have said that a non-nuclear war with North Korea would cost hundreds of thousands of civilian lives within the first few days of fighting, and put the 28,500 American troops stationed in South Korea in grave danger.

If the “No Unconstitutional Strike Against North Korea” act passes, the risk of a catastrophic war occurring would be substantially reduced.

As of this date, Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris are not co-sponsors. Co-sponsors of the House bill H.R.4140 within the Bay Area are:

Rep. Barbara Lee
Rep. John Garamendi
Rep. Mark DeSaulnier
Rep. Ro Khanna
Rep. Zoe Lofgren
Rep. Jared Huffman
Rep. Anna Eshoo

To call your member of Congress and express your opinion, you can use the capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121.