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Thad McCotter on War & Peace

Republican Representative (MI-11)


Libya has ill-defined mission; no US boots on the ground

Q: Would any of you have gone into Libya?

Johnson: Absolutely not.

McCotter: The Administration shouldn't have commenced its ill-defined Libya mission; however once committed, we can't abruptly withdraw & further harm our diminishing credibility in the world. Now, in solely a support role to prevent further involvement--no US boots on ground.

Johnson: Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya--Get out now!

Source: 2011 Republican primary debate on Twitter.com , Jul 21, 2011

Afghan & Iraqi theaters are part of War for Freedom

    Truths in Our War for Freedom
  1. America is not engaged in a War on Terror. America is engaged in a War for Freedom.
  2. Afghanistan and Iraq were never separate wars; they have always been battle thaters in the War for Freedom.
  3. Our terrorist enemy is not novel. America has previously defeated enemies from sword-wielding pirates to nuclear-armed nations.
  4. This enemy knows it cannot defeat our military on the battlefield. The enemy is employing violence in an act of psychological warfare.
  5. To win this struggle, America must maintain its moral clarity, cognizant that the enemy is evil and we are emancipators.
  6. The enemy is avowedly imperialist; America is demonstrably a liberator. To safeguard our own freedom, we have extended freedom to more than 50 million Muslims.
  7. We must undertake a policy of constructive containment, which circles imperial nations with democracies until these tyrannies implode beneath their own peoples; desire to be free.
Source: Seize Freedom, by Rep. Thad McCotter, p. 96-97 , Feb 8, 2011

No retreat in arduous eradication of terrorists

Winning requires the arduous eradication of terrorists around the globe through diplomatic, economic, & military initiatives in tiered theaters of operations. There is no retreat in this unsought struggle. We are targeted by tyrants & terrorists who know they cannot enslave humanity so long as America and her allies breathe free. Salvation will not be denied us. The general public's perception of the threat is also assaulted by a far more insidious vision--namely, that it is an overblown threat.
Source: Seize Freedom, by Rep. Thad McCotter, p.105-107 , Feb 8, 2011

America: Arise, go forth, and conquer as of old

Reagan led the rejuvenation of America's morale and economy, its Cold War victory over Communism, and its emergence as the world's sole superpower. Lincoln the founder, Roosevelt the builder, and Reagan the finisher--each met Alfred Lord Tennyson's summons to "live pure, speak true, right wrong," and led America as it transcended the generational challenges of the time. We take heart despite our trying times. As they did before us, we will seize our opportunity to sacrifice and suffer so we can transcend our great challenges and conserve our beloved country. Though we may be down, Americans are never out--indeed, no honorable people ever are. It remains as in Tennyson's "Idylls of the King," wherein a disillusioned King Arthur awakens from a haunting dream of disaster, and by his side Sir Bedivere urges: "O me, my King, let pass whatever will. As yet thou shalt not pass. Arise, go forth and conquer as of old." America: As yet thou shalt not pass. Arise, go forth, and conquer as of old!
Source: Seize Freedom, by Rep. Thad McCotter, p. 56-57 , Feb 8, 2011

It's not a War ON Terrorism; but a War FOR Freedom

On Sept. 11, 2001, our nation was invaded, three thousand of our fellow Americans were murdered, and we were thrust into an unsought struggle--the War for Freedom--against the butcher bin Laden's death cult and Middle Eastern fascism. Frankly, the enemy lusts to kill us for our "sin" of being free. As the attacked, we do not primarily wage a War on Terrorism. We wage a War FOR Freedom. Our immediate enemy is "infidel fascism"; our long-term enemy is Iranian imperialism. Against the terrorists--for the liberty of generations unborn. Right now, in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq, and throughout the world, humanity is batting infidel fascism. In Islam, kufar means "infidels." Because al-Qaeda and bin Laden butcher innocents, including Muslims, they are the kufar who pervert Islam's peaceful path and sinfully seek to enslave others of God's children. Intensifying the threat, the enemy is also fascist. This hideous ideological concoction has cunningly adapted to a globalized world.
Source: Seize Freedom, by Rep. Thad McCotter, p. 93-94 , Feb 8, 2011

Voted NO on removing US armed forces from Afghanistan.

Congressional Summary:
    Directs the President, pursuant to the War Powers Resolution, to remove the U.S. Armed Forces from Afghanistan:
  1. by no later than 30 days after this resolution is adopted; or
  2. if the President determines that it is not safe to remove them by such date, by no later than December 31, 2011.

Proponent's Argument for voting Yes:
[Rep. Kucinich, D-OH]:The American people oppose this war by a margin of two to one. Nearly 2/3 of Americans say the war isn't worth fighting. We are spending $100 billion per year on this war. There are those who are saying the war could last at least another 10 years. Are we willing to spend another $1 trillion on a war that doesn't have any exit plan, for which there is no timeframe to get out, no endgame, where we haven't defined our mission? The question is not whether we can afford to leave. The question is, can we afford to stay? And I submit we cannot afford to stay. The counterintelligence strategy of General Petraeus is an abysmal failure, and it needs to be called as such.

Opponent's Argument for voting No:
[Rep. Ros-Lehtinen, R-FL]: This resolution would undermine the efforts of our military and our international partners in Afghanistan and would gravely harm our Nation's security. 3,000 people died on Sep. 11 because we walked away once from Afghanistan, thinking that it didn't matter who controlled that country. We were wrong then. Let us not make the same mistake twice. Completing our mission in Afghanistan is essential to keeping our homeland safe. This is about our vital national security interests. It is about doing what is necessary to ensure that al Qaeda and other extremists cannot reestablish safe havens such as the ones they had in Afghanistan when the 9/11 attacks were planned against our Nation and our people. The enemy, indeed, is on the run. It is demoralized and divided. Let us not give up now.

Reference: Resolution on Afghanistan; Bill HConRes28 ; vote number 11-HV193 on Mar 17, 2011

Voted NO on investigating Bush impeachment for lying about Iraq.

OnTheIssues.org Explanation: This vote is on referring the impeachment resolution to a Congressional Committee to decide further action (not on impeachment itself).

Congressional Summary: Resolved, That President George W. Bush be impeached for committing the following abuses of power:

Proponents' arguments for voting YEA: Rep. Kucinich: Now is the time for this Congress to examine the actions that led us into this war, just as we must work to bring our troops home. This resolution is a very serious matter and I urge the Committee on Judiciary to investigate and carefully consider this resolution.

Rep. Wasserman-Schultz: Impeachment is a lengthy process which would divide Congress and this nation even more deeply than we are divided right now. Referring this resolution to the House Judiciary Committee is the constitutionally appropriate process that should be pursued.

Rep. Ron Paul: I rise, reluctantly, in favor of referring that resolution to the House Judiciary Committee for full consideration, which essentially directs the committee to examine the issue more closely than it has done to this point.

Reference: The Kucinich Privilege Resolution; Bill H.RES.1258 ; vote number 2008-401 on Jun 11, 2008

Voted NO on redeploying US troops out of Iraq starting in 90 days.

To provide for the redeployment of US Armed Forces and defense contractors from Iraq. Requires within 90 days to commence the redeployment; and to complete such redeployment within 180 days after its commencement. Prohibits the use of DOD funds to increase the number of US forces serving in Iraq in excess of the number serving in Iraq as of January 1, 2007, unless specifically authorized by Congress. Authorizes retaining in Iraq US forces for providing security for diplomatic missions; for targeting al-Qaeda; and for training Iraqi Security Forces. Requires the President to transfer to the government of Iraq all interest held by the US in any military facility in Iraq.

Proponents support voting YES because:

This war is a terrible tragedy, and it is time to bring it to an end. This is a straightforward bill to redeploy our military forces from Iraq and to end the war in Iraq. This bill does not walk away from the Iraqi people. It specifically continues diplomatic, social, economic, and reconstruction aid. Finally, this bill leaves all the decisions on the locations outside of Iraq to which our troops will be redeployed wholly in the hands of our military commanders.

Opponents support voting NO because:

This legislation embraces surrender and defeat. This legislation undermines our troops and the authority of the President as commander in chief. Opponents express concern about the effects of an ill-conceived military withdrawal, and about any legislation that places military decisions in the hands of politicians rather than the military commanders in the field. The enemy we face in Iraq view this bill as a sign of weakness. Now is not the time to signal retreat and surrender. It is absolutely essential that America, the last remaining superpower on earth, continue to be a voice for peace and a beacon for freedom in our shrinking world.

Reference: Out of Iraq Caucus bill; Bill H R 2237 ; vote number 2007-330 on May 10, 2007

Voted YES on approving removal of Saddam & valiant service of US troops.

States that the House of Representatives:
  1. affirms that the United States and the world have been made safer with the removal of Saddam Hussein and his regime from power in Iraq;
  2. commends the Iraqi people for their courage in the face of unspeakable oppression and brutality inflicted on them by Saddam Hussein's regime;
  3. commends the Iraqi people on the adoption of Iraq's interim constitution; and
  4. commends the members of the U.S. Armed Forces and Coalition forces for liberating Iraq and expresses its gratitude for their valiant service.
Reference: War in Iraq Anniversary resolution; Bill H Res 557 ; vote number 2004-64 on Mar 17, 2004

Strengthen sanctions on Syria & assist democratic transition.

McCotter co-sponsored strengthening sanctions on Syria & assist democratic transition

A bill to strengthen sanctions against the Government of Syria, to enhance multilateral commitment to address the Government of Syria's threatening policies, to establish a program to support a transition to a democratically-elected government in Syria.

Source: Syria Accountability and Liberation Act (S2917/HR2332) 08-S2917 on Apr 24, 2008

No contact & enforce sanctions on Iran until threat is gone.

McCotter co-sponsored Iran Threat Reduction Act

Congressional Summary:

  1. Iran Energy Sanctions: Compelling Iran to abandon its pursuit of nuclear weapons and other threatening activities can be achieved most effectively through full implementation of all enacted sanctions. Declares that it is US policy to deny Iran the ability to support acts of foreign terrorist organizations and develop unconventional weapons.
  2. Iran Freedom Support: States that specified sanctions regarding Iran shall remain in effect until the President certifies to Congress that the government of Iran has dismantled its nuclear weapons, biological and chemical weapons, and ballistic missile development programs; and ceased its support for international terrorism.
  3. Iran Regime and Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Accountability: Prohibits any US person from knowingly conducting any commercial transaction with any IRGC-owned entity or any foreign entity that conducts any transaction with the IRGC.
  4. Iran Financial Sanctions: Divestment from Certain Companies that Invest in Iran; and Prevention of Diversion of Certain Goods, Services, and Technologies to Iran.

Opponent's Comments (Robert Naiman on Huffington Post, Dec. 13, 2011):This bill would restore as policy the "Cooties Doctrine" of the early Bush Administration--US officials can't meet with officials of the adversary, because our officials might get contaminated. It seems highly doubtful that the provision is constitutional, since it tries to micromanage the executive branch in its conduct of foreign affairs. But putting the legal issuesaside, isn't the logic of this provision completely counter to the argument that we voted for in Nov. 2008: that it's ok--indeed, it is wise, prudent, and preferable--for the US to be able to talk to its adversaries?

Result: Bill passed the House on Dec. 15, 2011, by a vote of 410-11 (rollcall vote #927). Referred to Senate, where there was no vote before adjournment.

Source: H.R.1905 11-H1905 on May 13, 2011

Boycott & sanctions against Iran for terrorism & nukes.

McCotter signed Iran Threat Reduction Act

Source: H.R.1905 11-HR1905 on May 13, 2011

Sanctions on Iran to end nuclear program.

McCotter signed Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act

    Expresses the sense of Congress that:
  1. diplomatic efforts to address Iran's illicit nuclear efforts, unconventional and ballistic missile development programs, and support for international terrorism are more likely to be effective if the President is empowered with explicit authority to impose additional sanctions on the government of Iran;
  2. US concerns regarding Iran are strictly the result of that government's actions; and
  3. the people of the United States have feelings of friendship for the people of Iran and regret that developments in recent decades have created impediments to that friendship.
    States that it should be US policy to:
  1. support international diplomatic efforts to end Iran's uranium enrichment program and its nuclear weapons program;
  2. encourage foreign governments to direct state-owned and private entities to cease all investment in, and support of, Iran's energy sector and all exports of refined petroleum products to Iran;
  3. impose sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran and any other Iranian financial institution engaged in proliferation activities or support of terrorist groups; and
  4. work with allies to protect the international financial system from deceptive and illicit practices by Iranian financial institutions involved in proliferation activities or support of terrorist groups.
Source: S.908&HR.2194 2009-S908 on Apr 30, 2009

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Page last updated: Feb 23, 2012