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In recent years the issue of the war powers of the Congress and the President has received special attention. It was clear that a broad consensus existed in the House of Representatives for legislation which would clarify more precisely this constitutional question.
During March 1973 the Subcommittee on National Security Policy and Scientific Developments held 6 days of hearings on the issue. These hearings complemented those held by the subcommittee in 1970 and 1971. As a result of those earlier considerations and subsequent full committee action, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved war powers legislation three times in the past two Congresses. Unfortunately, however, full congressional approval was precluded by the Senate's failure to act in the 91st Congress and by the inability of conferees to reach agreement late in the 92d Congress.
Undeterred by these earlier developments, the House of Representatives in the 93d Congress demonstrated its renewed determination to pass meaningful and effective war powers legislation. That fact is amply evident in the more than 30 bills and resolutions representing approximately 12 different approaches to the question which were considered during the hearings recorded in this document.
On the basis of renewed understanding provided in the hearings and following several extensive and thorough open markup sessions, the subcommittee on May 2 approved a clean resolution for full committee action. The text of that resolution, House Joint Resolution 542, appears in the appendix to this volume.
The safeguards provided in this legislation will, I believe, restore to the Congress its rightful role in the area of war powers—the role which was envisaged by our Founding Fathers when they wrote the Constitution.
Hopefully, the testimony, comments, observations, and varied views presented by our colleagues, constitutional lawyers, historians, and academicians will be of assistance as this legislation is considered by the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Congress. Undoubtedly, by enacting war powers legislation the Congress will demonstrate its commitment to the responsibilities we have as Members of Congress and representatives of the American people.
CLEMENT J. ZABLOCKI,
LIST OF WITNESSES
Fascell, Hon. Dante B., a Representative in Congress from the State
Chappell, Hon. William, Jr., a Representative in Congress from the
Bingham, Hon. Jonathan B., a Representative in Congress from the
Tuesday, March 20, 1973:
Stevenson, Hon. John, former legal adviser, Department of State,
member of New York Bar..
MATERIAL SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD
June 23, 1970.--
Powers Act, Congressional Record, January 18, 1973-
STATEMENTS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD
BY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS
committee on National Security Policy, House of Representatives, in
opposition to S. 440, War Powers Act.
Text of House Joint Resolution 542..
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 7, 1973
Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met at 10 a.m., in room 2200, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Clement J. Zablocki (chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.
Mr. ZABLOCKI. The subcommittee will please come to order. Today the Subcommittee on National Security Policy and Scientific Developments opens 6 days of hearings on pending bills and resolutions concerning the war powers of Congress and the President.
These hearings are a follow-on and complement to extensive hearings on the same subject held by the subcommittee in 1970 and 1971. As a result of those hearings, the subcommittee drafted war powers legislation which passed the House of Representatives in both the 91st and 92d Congresses.
Subsequent failure by the Senate to act in the 91st Congress and a parliamentary snarl in the 92d Congress prevented agreement.
Consequently, with the convening of the 93d Congress an updated and strengthened resolution was introduced as House Joint Resolution 2. That resolution and a number of other proposals which have been introduced on the subject of war powers will be considered during these hearings.
SENATOR JAVITS FIRST WITNESS
Our first witness this morning is the Honorable Jacob Javits. First elected to the Senate from the State of New York in 1956, he has served his State and the Nation with distinction over the years.
As an alumnus of the House and of our committee, Senator, we welcome you. You have, together with Senators Stennis and Eagleton been a leader in the war powers area. We look upon you as an expert though we may not agree with you fully.
It is a pleasure to welcome you before the subcommittee.
STATEMENT OF HON. JACOB K. JAVITS, A U.S. SENATOR FROM THE
STATE OF NEW YORK
Senator JAVITS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I greatly appreciate your remarks. Congressman Findley said I was coming home, which is quite correct; I was a member of this committee when I was in the House of Representatives.