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Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers mull Trump’s war power, next steps with Iran

Defense Secretary Mark Esper and national security advisor Robert O’Brien will make the rounds on network Sunday talk shows this week, as America waits to see what the Trump administration’s next move regarding Iran will be. 

Democratic lawmakers in the Senate are also debating to what extent they would like to limit President Trump‘s war powers.

During a press conference on Wednesday this week, the president intimated that tensions between Iran and the U.S.might de-escalate. 

Trump’s address came on Wednesday morning after Iran launched a retaliatory missile strike at two Iraqi bases that house U.S. troops one day prior. In his remarks, the president confirmed that the attack resulted in no American casualties and minimal damage to the bases. 

“Iran appears to be standing down, which is a good thing for all parties concerned and a very good thing for the world,” Trump said.

Iran’s attack was in response to a U.S. air strike last week that killed Qassem Soleimani – Iran’s top military commander – in Baghdad.

While Trump also said that the U.S. would be introducing new “punishing” sanctions during his speech, next steps for both countries are still unclear.

Although most Republicans have backed Trump’s decision to authorize the strike on Soleimani, Democrats have criticized the administration, and two Republicans — Sens. Mike Lee (Utah) and Rand Paul (Ky.) — complained a briefing this week explaining the intelligence behind the strike was seriously lacking.

The two conservative senators are normally staunch supporters of Trump, though they are also weary of U.S. involvement in military action in the Middle East.

The White House has cited the 2002 Iraq Resolution, which authorized former President George H.W. Bush to take military action against Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi government.

On Thursday, with a vote of 224-194, the House passed a war powers resolution that would direct the president to end military hostilities with Iran unless Congress specifically authorizes it or the United States faces an “imminent armed attack.”

However, Senate Democrats are debating amongst themselves whether to take up the resolution passed in the House that limits Trump’s powers, or to stick to a piece of legislation proposed by Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine (D) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.).

Should the GOP-majority Senate go forward with Kaine and Durbin’s bill, it has very little chance of becoming law, as it requires Trump’s signature. 

The House resolution does not require Trump’s signature, but it is not clear whether or not it would limit the president, lending itself to Supreme Court action. 

Esper will appear on CBS’ “Face the Nation” and CNN’s “State of the Union,” while O’Brien will be on NBC’s “Meet the Press” and “Fox News Sunday.”

Paul will also be on “Meet the Press,” along with Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Michael Bennet, (D-Colo.).

Lee will appear on “Face the Nation,” as will Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and former Secretary of State John Kerry.

The full Sunday lineup is below:

ABC’s “This Week” — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.); national security advisor Robert O’Brien.

NBC’s “Meet the Press” — O’Brien; Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky.; Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.)

CBS’ “Face the Nation” — Defense Secretary Mark Esper; Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Tim Kaine (D-Va.); Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.); former Secretary of State John Kerry.

CNN’s “State of the Union” — Esper; Lee; Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer.

“Fox News Sunday” — O’Brien; Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del.

FOX News Channel’s “Sunday Morning Futures” — Sec. Steven Mnuchin, United States Secretary of the Treasury; Steve Bannon, Former White House Chief Strategist; Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.); Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.); Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.)

On Thursday, with a vote of 224-194, the House passed a war powers resolution that would direct the president to end military hostilities with Iran unless Congress specifically authorizes it or the United States faces an “imminent armed attack.”

However, Senate Democrats are debating amongst themselves whether to take up the resolution passed in the House that limits Trump’s powers, or to stick to a piece of legislation proposed by Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine (D) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.).

Should the GOP-majority Senate go forward with Kaine and Durbin’s bill, it has very little chance of becoming law, as it requires Trump’s signature. 

The House resolution does not require Trump’s signature, but it is not clear whether or not it would limit the president, lending itself to Supreme Court action. 

Esper will appear on CBS’ “Face the Nation” and CNN’s “State of the Union,” while O’Brien will be on NBC’s “Meet the Press” and “Fox News Sunday.”

Paul will also be on “Meet the Press,” along with Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Michael Bennet, (D-Colo.).

Lee will appear on “Face the Nation,” as will Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and former Secretary of State John Kerry.

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