Merkley Introduces Resolution to Prevent Military Intervention in Venezuela Without Explicit Congressional Authorization

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following repeated hints from the Trump Administration that it is considering a military intervention in Venezuela, Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley today introduced a Senate resolution that would prohibit military action in Venezuela without explicit congressional approval.

Merkley is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and serves as the top Democrat on the Subcommittee on Multilateral Institutions.

“It’s critical that the Venezuelan people are the ones to determine their own future, and that the U.S. does not repeat a failed strategy of military intervention in Latin America,” said Merkley. “Nicolas Maduro is a brutal dictator and incompetent leader. He should heed the will of his people, step down, and allow new elections to occur while an interim government leads. The U.S. can and must support the people of Venezuela not through an unconstitutional, unauthorized military intervention, but with humanitarian aid and targeted economic pressure to hasten the day Maduro leaves power.”

In late January, National Security Adviser John Bolton sparked alarm when he publicly displayed a notepad that indicated the administration was shifting troops to Colombia, possibly to prepare for a potential military action in Venezuela. President Trump and top administration officials, including Vice President Pence, have repeatedly stated that “all options are on the table” for Venezuela.

Merkley’s resolution follows a similar House resolution authored by Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI).  A full copy of Merkley’s resolution can be found here.