PR NewsWire / US NewsWire – 2008-10-23 23:03:41
WASHINGTON (October 16, 2008) — President George Bush this week rejected a Congressional effort to bar the United States military from controlling Iraq’s oil resources.
Before signing a military funding bill earlier this week, the president issued a “signing statement,” barring any expenditure of funds to “To exercise United States control of the oil resources of Iraq.”
The Friends Committee on National Legislation, a 65-year-old Quaker lobby, has worked with Congress for three years to pass legislation that bars the United States from building permanent military bases in Iraq or exercising control of Iraq’s oil resources. “We are dismayed that the president would deny the Iraqi people and its government the basic sovereign right to control their own natural resources.
President Bush apparently believes that as commander in chief he is entitled to seize Iraq’s oil fields and control Iraqi oil if he should deem it necessary to protect US national security,” said Jim Fine, a lobbyist for the Friends Committee on National Legislation. “It’s hard to see any other logic behind his signing statement. He has, in effect, declared himself — and any future US presidents who fail to repudiate his outlandish claims — emperors of Iraq.”
President Bush has signed the restriction against controlling Iraqi oil into law five times since 2006, but has issued 2 signing statements this year asserting that banning U.S. control over Iraqi oil would violate the constitutional powers of the executive. He argues that his administration is not legally bound to abide by those provisions.
Statement by the President on S. 3001, the “Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2009”
White House News
Today I have signed into law S. 3001, the “Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2009.” The Act authorizes funding for the defense of the United States and its interests abroad, for military construction, and for national security-related energy programs.
Provisions of the Act, including sections 851, 902, 1211(2), and 1508(b), purport to impose requirements that could inhibit the President’s ability to carry out his constitutional obligations to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, to protect national security, to conduct diplomatic negotiations, to supervise the executive branch, to appoint officers of the United States, and to execute his authority as Commander in Chief. The executive branch shall continue to construe such provisions in a manner consistent with the constitutional authority and obligations of the President.
GEORGE W. BUSH
THE WHITE HOUSE,
October 14, 2008.
Military Funding Authorization Legislation
Prohibits US Control of Iraqi Oil
Updated: 10/21/2008 Posted: 10/21/2008
Before leaving for recess Congress passed the Defense Authorization bill, which designates funds for the military. That legislation included the following language, which prohibits funds being used on permanent U.S. bases in Iraq, or to exercise oil of Iraqi oil resources:
SEC. 1211. LIMITATION ON AVAILABILITY OF FUNDS FOR CERTAIN PURPOSES RELATING TO IRAQ.
No funds appropriated pursuant to an authorization of appropriations in this Act may be obligated or expended for a purpose as follows:
1. To establish any military installation or base for the purpose of providing for the permanent stationing of United States Armed Forces in Iraq.
2. To exercise United States control of the oil resources of Iraq.
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