March 29, 2023

Duckworth Applauds Senate Repeal of Decades-Old Authorizations for the Use of Military Force That Would Formally End Gulf and Iraq Wars if Signed Into Law


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — Just days after marking the Iraq War’s 20th anniversary, combat Veteran and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), member of both the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations and U.S. Senate Armed Services Committees, joined her Senate colleagues to pass bipartisan legislation, which Duckworth is a cosponsor of, that would repeal the 1991 and 2002 Authorizations for Use of Military Force (AUMFs) and formally end the Gulf and Iraq wars. For years, Duckworth has spoken out about repealing the AUMFs—including a passionate address to her colleagues last week on the Senate floor—and has joined multiple bipartisan efforts to get this done.

“Our brave servicemembers who sacrifice so much to defend our country deserve to know that they have the moral support and legal backing of this nation—yet, for more than 20 years, Washington has failed to give them even that,” said Duckworth. “If we choose to send our finest into battle, then we need to debate and vote to do so based on current conditions. I’m proud that today the Senate finally voted to repeal these decades-old AUMFs so we can start honoring our troops in the way they deserve, and I hope the House will move quickly to get this to President Biden’s desk.”

The 1991 and 2002 AUMFs authorized the use of force for the Gulf and Iraq wars, but Congress has allowed these AUMFs to last much longer than they were intended, leaving them subject to potential misuse by the Executive Branch. If signed into law, the bill would reassert Congress’ constitutional role in deciding whether and when to send our servicemembers into harm’s way and enhance the relationship the United States now has with a sovereign, democratic Iraq.

Duckworth is an Iraq War Veteran who served in the Reserve Forces for 23 years before retiring from military service in 2014 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. She is a Purple Heart recipient and one of the first handful of Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom.