Jennifer Steinhauer
June 24, 2011

The House on Friday resoundingly rejected a measure that would have authorized the United States’ mission in Libya, with 70 Democrats deserting President Obama on an issue that has divided their party and became a major Constitutional flash point between Congress and the White House.

The resolution — one of two the House took up Friday — failed 295 to 123, with an overwhelming majority of Republicans voting no. Only eight Republicans supported the measure, which was based on a Senate measure introduced Tuesday by Senators John Kerry, Democrat of Massachusetts, and John McCain, Republican of Arizona, that has yet to be voted on. (See how all the members voted.)

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Over the last few months, there has been increasing hostility toward the Obama administration in the House among both Democrats who oppose the war and many Republicans, who cite Constitutional issues, over the president’s refusal to seek authorization from Congress for the operations in Libya. They say such authorization is required by the 1973 War Powers Resolution.

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