In a puzzling series of events this past week, House Democrats have once again shown their hand: a lack of faith in President Biden. Nearly three dozen House Democrats sent a letter requesting that the President give up his military command over the United States’ nuclear arsenal. Although this move may utterly confound many, Democrats have, in secret, been itching to reform the country’s nuclear weapon policy for the last few years.
During the 2020 primaries, Democratic candidates were asked about their opinions on various foreign policy topics. One set of questions distributed by The New York Times revolved around the candidates’ attitudes towards nuclear war. Famously, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) drew headlines when she ultimately rejected the idea of a preemptive nuclear strike on any enemies of the United States. Of course, the antagonistic countries of Iran and North Korea immediately came up in the minds of anyone who had paid attention to American foreign policy within the last twenty years.
Warren was attacked by many moderate Democrats for this position, with Montana Governor Steve Bullock retorting that the idea of sacrificing an American city before even planning to retaliate was insane. Unfortunately for many Americans, Warren’s vision was not as unpopular or radical as it originally appeared.
Mistrust of the Executive Branch
To be clear, the latest attempts by Congressional Democrats to pry decision-making from the commander-in-chief are an attack on the Constitution. Regardless of one’s opinion of Joe Biden, our Constitution states that the president maintains supreme command over the United States armed forces. At first, it might seem unclear why a sizeable margin of the Democratic Party wishes to take power away from their Democrat President on this issue. Trump Derangement Syndrome was, in fact, another symptom of Democrats’ mistrust of the process that elects our commander in chief every four years.
Congressional Democrats seek to grant nuclear strike veto powers to the vice president and Congress itself. These requests have led many to speculate that Democrats might be using the cover of former President Trump’s perceived turbulent foreign policy to place more power in the hands of Vice President Kamala Harris and the Democrat-controlled Congress.
Since Biden announced Kamala Harris as his vice president, Republican critics have lambasted the former California senator’s perceived eagerness to seize the reins of power from Biden at the first given opportunity. This latest move from Congressional Democrats will aggravate the fears Republicans have about the radical Kamala Harris being granted unprecedented executive power. As the news made its way through the media, even Republican legislators have come out against the proposition from their Democratic colleagues. House Representatives Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Mike Turner (R-OH) rightfully called the request dangerous, noting that no matter who was in charge, the president should have the exclusive ability to manage our policy of nuclear deterrence.
Read more from Jose Backer.
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