When President Donald Trump complained recently about how few prominent Republicans had his back, he was not kidding. A recent House vote to tie up the President, undermine his foreign policy, and partially remove his discretion pertaining to Russia passed with only three GOP legislators objecting.
Reps. Jimmy Duncan (R-TN), Thomas Massie (R-KY) and Justin Amash (R-MI) were the three lone “no” votes against a successful measure limiting Trump’s ability to remove sanctions on Russia that were approved by Congress. This maneuver may harm Trump’s ability to conduct diplomacy with Russia, and further jeopardize tenuous relations with the nation.
Hiding behind the Constitution to justify his disloyal and shameful actions, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.) said, “This strong oversight is necessary. It is appropriate. After all, it is Congress that the Constitution empowers to regulate commerce with foreign nations.”
With the exception of the three hold-outs, every other GOP legislators who voted on the bill colluded with every single Congressional Democrat to hamper President Trump’s foreign policy. The three legislators who voted this measure down have the most conservative voting records in the House, according to various metrics.
The Trump administration was pushing for the bill to be weakened so the President would be given more leeway in determining sanctions to help his deal-making power. However, the administration is playing down this news, suggesting they have no problem with sanctions, and taking a wait-and-see approach moving forward.
“While the President supports tough sanctions on North Korea, Iran and Russia, the White House is reviewing the House legislation and awaits a final legislative package for the President’s desk,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a release following the House vote on Tuesday.
Additionally, the bill levies sanctions on North Korea and Iran. Former Congressman Ron Paul referred to economic sanctions as acts of war. House Freedom Caucus members Amash and Duncan, joined by their fellow traveler Massie, remembered Dr. Paul’s example, but their colleagues are very far behind. It will be a long time, if ever, before the whole of the Congress understands that non-intervention rather than belligerence is the only path forward to a safe and free America.