By Jon Dougherty
(TNS) Majority Democrats in the House passed a non-binding resolution on Thursday that sought to limit President Donald Trump’s options in dealing with Iran.
The measure passed, but as reports noted, since it’s non-binding, even if it gets through the Senate it’ll never make it to the president’s desk anyway. It was a prototypical “show vote” — done for purely political reasons because Democrats are attempting to cast the president as a “war hawk.”
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He’s anything but, and he told Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) — one of three Republicans who supported the measure — personally.
Gaetz, who appeared on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” Thursday evening to discuss his vote, noted, “I spoke to the president today. The president told me he is more antiwar than I am, and I love the president for that.
“The thing is, I think a few of the advisers of the president are trying to slow-walk the administration into war. When the president relies on his instincts and we have the Trump doctrine, we kill the terrorist and we come home,” he continued.
“I think this War Powers Resolution was worthy of support because it did not criticize the president,” Gaetz said. “It did not say he was wrong in killing [Quds Force Gen.] Soleimani.
“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 added. “That’s something I deeply believe. And I think it’s something the president deeply believes.”
Tucker asked Gaetz how President Trump felt about the way he voted.
“Just to be totally clear,” Tucker asked, “you are one of three Republicans who voted, in effect, against the president’s stated position but you just talked to the president and he said that he is on your side?”
“Well, the president probably would have preferred that I vote with the other Republicans,” Gaetz responded. “He certainly said that.
“I think on these broader questions of war and peace, Donald Trump understands that the pro-war candidate loses presidential elections … it’s typically the anti-war candidates that win,” the Florida Republican noted. “I think that the president understands that and he is too smart to let Nancy Pelosi try to cast him as the pro-war candidate.”
Gaetz obviously knows this president well. And so Americans by now, especially those of us who voted for him and want him to be wildly successful because that means our country is wildly successful.
The president campaigned on extricating our forces from the never-ending brushfire wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere. He not only knew instinctively that most Americans want that as well, but as we’ve seen time after time, the campaign promises this president makes, he acts on them.
And yet, troops remain in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. The question is why? Why can’t/won’t the president get us out of those places and let the theocratic savages have their way with each other, as they’ve done now for 1,000 years?
It certainly isn’t because the president is a war hawk. So there must be something else going on, it stands to reason.
I offer this. Yes, we’ve been at war, technically, for nigh on 20 years in Afghanistan, and about that long in Iraq. Syria was Obama’s deal, but Trump inherited it.
We’ve seen how this president responds when it comes time to order American forces into action: It didn’t take the U.S. military long, working with partners, to eliminate the ISIS caliphate, for example.
We saw this month a president use restraint after killing a terrorist scumbag and having the Iranians respond with a missile attack; he stepped back from the brink.
He has ordered some U.S. forces out of Afghanistan, and currently, his administration is trying to talk peace with the Taliban. Peace takes time, and after being in a country for 20 years, it takes time to withdraw forces the host nation has come to rely on for security and other assistance.
So these processes are taking place, and they are happening because President Trump instinctively knows that Americans don’t want war unless we are attacked and provoked; that we’ve been fighting in places we currently are deployed for far too long; and there are bigger threats to American national security — Russia and China.
Our president is a results-oriented kind of guy. We’re not getting the results we ostensibly seek in places like Afghanistan and Iraq, yet we continue to bleed in those places. He wants to bring our men and women home. He should do that, and we should support him.
Gaetz is right; that is the president’s instinct, and he should follow it. It’s long overdue.
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