House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) Thursday criticized the Obama administration’s 32-page report on U.S. operations in Libya and called on the president to submit further details to Congress ahead of a Friday deadline set by a House resolution earlier this month.
“The administration gave its opinion on the War Powers Resolution, but didn’t answer the question in my letter as to whether the Office of Legal Counsel agrees with it,” Boehner told reporters at a news conference on jobs Thursday morning.
“I’m looking forward to an answer on this by tomorrow,” Boehner said. “The White House says there are no hostilities taking place, yet we’ve got drone attacks underway, we’re spending $10 million a day as part of an effort to drop bombs on Gaddafi’s compounds. It just doesn’t pass the straight-face test in my view that we’re not in the midst of hostilities.”
Boehner, who earlier this week sent a letter to Obama pushing for an explanation on whether the administration’s intervention in Libya is in compliance with the 1973 War Powers Resolution, noted that it has been four weeks since Obama publicly addressed the American people about the mission in Libya.
“I think it’s time for the president to outline to the American people why we are there, what the mission is and what our goals are and how do we exit this,” Boehner said.
Asked what the House is prepared to do in the case that it does not receive a satisfactory answer from Obama on Libya, Boehner declined to go into detail, saying only that “the House has options.”
“We’re looking at those options and my guess is next week we may be prepared to move on those options, based on the answers to the questions that we gave,” Boehner said.
Thursday marks the 89th day of the U.S. intervention in Libya. In addition to facing mounting opposition from members of Congress, Obama also now faces a federal complaint filed Wednesday by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) and a bipartisan group of nine other lawmakers.
Friday marks the deadline that the House set in a resolution earlier this month for the administration to respond to a series of questions from lawmakers about the mission. Boehner’s statement is an indication that lawmakers may move forward on legislation as early as next week, including a potential effort to block funding for the Libyan mission.