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President gets scolded for Libya

Local Reps. Lou Barletta and Tom Marino join most Republicans to vote for resolution, which passes 268-145.

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio exits the House chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday.

AP photo

WASHINGTON — The Republican-controlled House on Friday adopted a resolution rebuking President Barack Obama for dispatching U.S. military forces against Libya without congressional approval.

The vote was 268-145, over White House objections.

Reps. Lou Barletta of Hazleton and Tom Marino of Lycoming Township voted for the resolution, as did most Republicans. Like a number of lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, Marino and Barletta made it clear they are not happy with Obama’s Libya policy.

The resolution by Speaker John Boehner said the president has failed to provide a “compelling rationale” for the nearly 3-month old operation to aid rebels battling Moammar Gadhafi’s forces. During Friday’s debate, Democrats and Republicans complained that Obama ignored Congress’ constitutional authority to declare war.

The nonbinding measure insists that Obama provide Congress with details on the scope of the mission and its costs within 14 days. It also bars U.S. ground forces except to rescue an American service member.

Shortly after adopting the resolution, the House rejected a considerably tougher measure advanced by Rep. Dennis Kucinch that demanded an end to U.S. involvement in the NATO-led operation in Libya. Both Barletta and Marino voted against that resolution, as did most Republicans, in the 265-148 vote.

The GOP leadership hastily pulled together the Boehner resolution amid concerns in both parties that the Kucinich measure was gaining ground.

The Senate had no plans to consider the measure, which would allow the U.S. to continue to remain engaged in the mission and would have no impact on the logistical and intelligence support the Americans have been providing.

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