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House votes to stop Trump from initiating a war with Iran

US President Donald Trump speaks with US Vice President Mike Pence(R) and US Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin after signing at the White House on June 24, 2019, 'hard-hitting sanctions' on Iran's supreme leader. - The US sanctions slapped Monday on Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other officials will block "literally billions" in Iranian assets, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said. The sanctions, which US President Donald Trump signed in an Oval Office appearance with Mnuchin, target eight top military commanders as well as Khamenei. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP)        (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Trump signing on to additional sanctions following the aborted attack in June.

On Friday afternoon, the House voted to limit Donald Trump’s authority to initiate a military strike against Iran without first seeking approval from Congress. The measure passed 251-170, with 27 Republicans joining 224 Democrats.

As The New York Times reports, the vote comes after Trump ordered a strike on Iran in June over the downing of an unmanned drone, only to reverse that order after planes and ships were already on the move to attack. Since that event, tensions have remained high, with U.S. upping economic sanctions against Iran, and Iran both announcing that it would purposely exceed the levels of uranium enrichment under the agreement that Trump walked away from, as well as interfering with the passage of tankers through the Strait of Hormuz.

The bill, which passed with 90% of support coming from Democrats, attracted some odd players among the Republicans—including arch Trump supporter Matt Gaetz, who declared himself “weary” of the attempts to start wars with Venezuela, as well as Iran.

The legislation was passed as an amendment onto a funding bill. This could make it harder for Mitch McConnell to simply file it away in his overflowing drawer of ignored legislation. If passed, the legislation would not restrict Trump’s authority to reply to an attack on U.S. forces.

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