PAUL FINDLEY, findley1 at frontier.com
Available for a limited number of interviews, Findley served as a member of United States House of Representatives for 22 years. He was a key author of the War Powers Act and a leader in securing its enactment by overriding the veto of President Richard Nixon. He is also the author of six books. The federal building in Springfield, Ill. is named for him.
He just wrote the piece “Obama has no Authority to Attack Syria,” which states: “Despite his own recent statements to the contrary, President Barack Obama has no legal authority to assault the government of Syria even as “a warning shot.” Neither the United States Constitution, nor the War Powers Act of 1973 gives him such authority in the absence of an emergency that allows Congress no time to react. Obama cannot cite the present situation as such an emergency, given his public statement that members of Congress need not act until the completion of their scheduled vacation. He has said that his proposal is ‘not time sensitive.’ If Congress fails to approve a resolution approving acts of war against Syria, he cannot order any military assault into Syria.
“On several recent occasions the President and administration officials have mentioned a “sixty day” period during which he has authority to act without approval of Congress. Such authority does not exist. It is a misreading of a provision of the War Powers Act that provides only Congress with oversight constraints on executive actions. …” Findley also recently wrote the piece “Syria — a War We Should Reject.”
FRANCIS BOYLE, fboyle at illinois.edu
Boyle is a professor at the University of Illinois College of Law and author of Tackling America’s Toughest Questions. Boyle drafted articles of impeachment that were introduced by the late Rep. Henry Gonzalez against President George H. W. Bush in 1991. Boyle said today: “Impeachment is the remedy for a president taking extra-constitutional action. Obama claims he has the authority to attack Syria when — under the Constitution — he does not.”