While several Republicans defended the decision to authorize a strike on Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) did not mince words in an appearance on CNN when he voiced his disapproval of the strike.
On Monday, Paul told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that it is “a certainty” that there will be attacks against American targets in retaliation for the strike.
“While Soleimani may have been plotting attacks, and probably was, it’s now a certainty that there will be attacks in revenge for his killing.”
See his comments below:
"I, in general, have always supported that a declaration of war [by Congress] is necessary." Sen. Rand Paul says that he's looking at the War Powers Authorization that Sen. Tim Kaine filed in the Senate, which would require any hostilities with Iran to be approved by Congress. pic.twitter.com/Au16N7S7g3— CNN (@CNN) January 7, 2020
He continued to say that the strike on Soleimani has made it harder for Iranian officials to engage in diplomacy with the U.S. without seeking revenge first.
“It lessens the voices of anybody that wants moderation or diplomacy. And even the Iranians will not be able to approach us on diplomacy until there’s revenge. Until there’s adequate revenge to satiate the people who want some kind of revenge. And this is sad. I mean the death of Soleimani, I think, is the death of diplomacy with Iran. I don’t see an off-ramp. I don’t see a way out of this.”
When asked if he thought President Donald Trump made a “major mistake,” Paul said he believed the president received bad advice, and criticized the administration’s Iran strategy —which he suggested was the brainchild of former National Security Advisor John Bolton.
“You’d have to be brain dead to believe that we tear up the [nuclear deal], we put an embargo on you, and we kill your major general. And they’re just going to crawl back to the table and say, ‘What do you want America?’ I mean military escalation is really what you’d predict with this.”
He continued to call the current escalation in military tension predictable, adding that “most people” could have predicted the administration’s strategy would have led to increased military tension.
Additionally, Paul indicated he would support a resolution to limit the president’s authority over military actions in regard to Iran.
“I, in general, have always supported that a declaration of war is necessary. I think killing a country’s major general is an act of war. I don’t think you can get away with saying it’s imminent. ”