Rep. Matt Gaetz Addresses Critics on War Powers Vote: ‘Trump Called Bush a War Criminal. And Then Won’
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) is getting criticized for his support of a war powers resolution meant to stop President Trump from attacking Iran without a formal declaration of war from Congress.
Gaetz has caught the ire of pro-Trump partisans, including Fox Business host Lou Dobbs, for joining Democrats to support the measure that was passed by Congress yesterday. He was one of only three Republicans to vote in favor of the resolution.
“Matt Gaetz, a Republican who the president has spoken out in support of, Gaetz himself has been supportive of the president, and then today, to go along in a symbolic B.S. resolution vote against the president?” Dobbs said on the Thursday edition of Lou Dobbs Tonight.
“It’s mind-boggling to me, and certainly it’s gonna damage his credibility among conservative allies and people that have supported him, including us,” said veteran Republican consultant Ed Rollins in response to Dobbs.
Gaetz is defending himself, explaining how there needs to be push-back from Congress against endless wars, and that President Trump ran as the anti-war candidate to get into the Oval Office.
(1) It didn’t criticize POTUS or his policies. Not once.
(2) It outlined the threat Iran poses and our right to self defense (not excluding preemptive strike).
(3) Only Congress has the power to declare war. Article I, sec (8).
Trump called Bush a war criminal. And then won. https://t.co/VQhUQNdGgH
— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) January 10, 2020
Gaetz, who supported the drone strike that assassinated Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, explained on Tucker Carlson Tonight that his support of the war powers resolution was meant to push back against the interventionist foreign policy that has been so costly throughout the years.
Gaetz noted on the House floor that “this resolution offers no criticism of the president — no critique. It doesn’t criticize the president’s attack on Soleimani. Matter of fact, this resolution doesn’t even say Soleimani’s name it.”
“But it did say that if any president wants to drag our nation into another forever Middle East war, that they require the approval of the United States Congress,” Gaetz explained to Carlson. “That’s something that I deeply believe, and I think it’s something the president deeply believes.”
Gaetz has emerged as one of the leading advocates of an “America First” foreign policy that stays out of globalist affairs and focuses on solving problems domestically.
He explained his outlook on foreign policy in detail at a veterans’ event last year:
Today our military is over-stretched, over-deployed and over-exerted. Growing up where I have, I’ve seen my whole life what endless deployments and unfocused wars really mean for our most patriotic fellow Americans.
Tearful airport goodbyes. Bargaining with God for the safe return of loved ones. Parenting disrupted. Marriages destroyed. Extra psychiatrists needed at our schools. Drug abuse. Domestic abuse. Veteran suicide. Shattered limbs, broken hearts and grieving families at Walter Reed Hospital. Caskets draped in flags. Gold Star families in mourning. Roads, parks and halls of learning named in permanent reverence for the fallen.
The ‘fog of war’ is no fog to me, or any of the 700 thousand people I serve. It is not hazy. We see the impact of war everyday among the people we love who shape our lives. It is a stark reminder that the unmatched freedoms we enjoy are not free– they are bought with the blood of American patriots. And it is our solemn duty and highest responsibility to make sure that this sacred currency is spent only when absolutely necessary. Unfortunately, prior to the election of Donald Trump, our decision makers have fallen short of this standard, demonstrating a tragic recklessness with the treasure of our nation and the blood of our patriots.
Gaetz’s principled decision has angered some Republicans, but it is clear that the patriotic Congressman is putting country first when making votes in the U.S. House.