Pelosi: Obama Did Not and Does Not Need Congress’ Authorization for Libya Action

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she is “very protective of congressional prerogative” regarding military action but believes that President Barack Obama did not need Congress’ authorization to take action against Libya and does not need congressional authorization today to continue with the operation.

At a Capitol Hill press conference on Thursday, Pelosi said, “Let me respond by saying I’ve always believed that it’s very important to respect the prerogatives of the Congress in terms of being involved in any military action, A. B, that the consultation between the executive and the legislative branch is essential whenever we engage in a military action. I believe the limited nature of this limited – of this engagement -- allows the president to go forward.”

“Now, I am reviewing the report he has, that they have sent to the Congress – the unclassified is in the public domain -- I’m going over the classified aspects of it,” she said.  “But I think that part of that report shows an interaction and consultation with Congress and I’m satisfied that we can continue in the limited role that we have as part of NATO. If we had boots on the ground, mano a mano, that’s a different story.”

Pelosi continued, “I’m satisfied that the president has the authority he needs to go ahead and I say that as one very protective of congressional prerogative and very supportive of consultation all along the way.”