WASHINGTON – As North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) leaders meet for the 2023 Vilnius summit in Lithuania, U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) – member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence – joined Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) in introducing legislation to explicitly prohibit any President of the United States from withdrawing from NATO without Senate approval or an Act of Congress.
“Russia’s unjust invasion of Ukraine demonstrates the critical need for NATO and the importance of strong alliances to protect America from threats around world,” said Sen. Moran. “If a U.S. President attempts to withdraw from NATO, Congress must be equipped with the tools to thoroughly evaluate, debate and first consent to this course of action. This legislation is an important step to further assuring our allies of the United States’ commitment to NATO.”
“Putin’s brutal war in Ukraine and Finland’s accession and Sweden’s pending accession into NATO all underscore the same thing: NATO is stronger than ever,” said Sen. Kaine. “I’m proud to introduce this bipartisan bill to reaffirm the United States’ commitment to NATO and ensure any U.S. President can’t unilaterally decide to leave the alliance without congressional approval.”
“NATO serves as an essential military alliance that protects shared military interests and enhances America’s international presence,” said Sen. Rubio. “Any decision to leave the alliance should be rigorously debated and considered by the U.S. Congress with the input of the American people.”
Specifically, the legislation requires the U.S. President to seek the advice and consent of the Senate before suspending, terminating or withdrawing U.S. membership in NATO. If a U.S. President attempts to leave NATO without Senate approval or an Act of Congress, the bill prohibits any funding from being used to do so and also authorizes Congressional Legal Counsel to challenge the administration in court.
As a longtime advocate of the alliance, Sen. Moran voted to ratify protocols for Finland and Sweden to join NATO in August 2022.
In addition to Sens. Moran, Kaine and Rubio, the legislation is cosponsored by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Angus King (I-Maine), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.).
Full text of the bill can be found HERE.
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