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Boehner Finally Speaks On U.S. Involvement In Libya

Paresh Dave |
March 20, 2011 | 12:12 p.m. PDT

Deputy Editor

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) requested the Obama administration to clearly define the American mission in Libya, where U.S. warships, drones and stealth bombers have been involved in two days of international attacks on government forces and buildings.

"The president is the commander-in-chief. But the administration has a responsibility to define for the American people, the Congress and our troops, what the mission in Libya is," Boehner said in a statement. "Before any further military commitments are made, the administration must do a better job of communicating to the American people and to Congress about our mission in Libya and how it will be achieved."

Obama is required by law to inform Congress of any military action within 48 hours and limit military action to no more than 60 days. For longer involvement, Congressional approval would be necessary.

U.S. officials said Sunday they were planning to hand over the reins of the operation in Libya to an international coalition in the next few days. Obama has promised to use any U.S. ground troops in Libya. He said the naval involvement would last days and not weeks.

Boehner was briefed by the White House before Saturday's first missile strikes. He and most other Republican leaders have stayed away from taking strong positions on intervention in Libya. Republican Senator John McCain and Democratic Senator John Kerry were strong advocates for the no-fly zone, which has now been sucessfully established.



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