Not in Westchester?
February 18, 2020

Politics

U.S. Rep. Eliot Engel speaks to students at the United Nations. Photo Credit: Provided
U.S. Rep. Eliot Engel, who represents Westchester and the Bronx, warned President Trump against inciting a war against Iran. Photo Credit: Twitter @RepEliotEngel

Westchester Congressman's Committee Warns Trump Against Being A 'Dictator'

The House Foreign Affairs Committee, chaired by Westchester Congressman Eliot Engel, told President Trump, "You're not a dictator" in a tweet on Sunday, Jan. 5.

Earlier tweets by Trump indicated that his Twitter comments served as ample notification to Congress in the event of a potential military strike against Iran.

Engel promised to oppose any military action by the Trump administration not OK'd in advance by Congress. In a statement, Engel vowed his personal vote against war with Iran should it be put up to a vote in the House. Engel's 16th Congressional District includes southern Westchester and the Bronx.

"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."

Engel's House foreign affairs panel, in its weekend tweet, warned President Trump 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. 

"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.

New York Sen. Charles Schumer, meanwhile, said the lack of advance consultation with Congress "can lead to hasty and ill-considered positions."

The social media exchange came after Trump authorized an airstrike that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran's Quds Force. The move sparked new fears of a war breaking out between the U.S. and Iran.