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House Foreign Affairs panel fires back at Trump in tweet: 'You're not a dictator'

The Hill logo The Hill 1/5/2020 John Bowden
Eliot Engel wearing a suit and tie: House Foreign Affairs panel fires back at Trump in tweet: 'You're not a dictator' © Greg Nash House Foreign Affairs panel fires back at Trump in tweet: 'You're not a dictator'

The House Foreign Affairs Committee slammed President Trump on Sunday after Trump appeared to write that his tweets served a s sufficient notification to Congress in the event of a potential military strike against Iran.

The Democratic-led panel, in a tweet mirroring the language Trump himself used in his message, warned the president that he was not a "dictator" and that Congress has the power to authorize acts of war.

"This Media Post will serve as a reminder that war powers reside in the Congress under the United States Constitution. And that you should read the War Powers Act. And that you're not a dictator," the committee tweeted.

Earlier on Sunday, Trump tweeted a warning that the U.S. would respond to any aggression from Iran with a potentially "disproportionate" response. He also appeared to suggest that his tweets sufficed as notification to Congress before such a move.

"These Media Posts will serve as notification to the United States Congress that should Iran strike any U.S. person or target, the United States will quickly & fully strike back, & perhaps in a disproportionate manner. Such legal notice is not required, but is given nevertheless!" Trump tweeted.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee's chairman, Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), has vowed to oppose any military action by the Trump administration not sanctioned ahead of time by Congress, and has also released a statement vowing his personal vote against war with Iran should it be put up to a vote in the House.

"The American people don't want war with Iran, and neither do I," Engel tweeted Saturday. "We need to send a clear message to the White House: don't plunge this country into an ill-conceived war against Iran."

The exchange comes after Trump authorized an airstrike that killed Qasem Soleimani, the head of Iran's Quds forces. The move, which was unexpected, shook the foreign policy establishment in Washington and sparked new fears of a war breaking out between Washington and Tehran.

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