News & Politics

GOP Senator on Iran Tensions: Trump 'Needs to Act Carefully and Firmly'

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) on Capitol Hill.

WASHINGTON — Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told PJM that he supports President Trump’s decision to send 1,000 additional troops to the Middle East amid escalating tensions with Iran.

“To this point, Iran has responded appropriately to shows of strength. Oftentimes if you show strength, you don’t need to use strength, obviously, and that would be the purpose. To me, it seems like a prudent move,” Cramer said Tuesday on Capitol Hill.

Cramer also said he’s worried about “some miscalculation” of Iran’s movements.

“Iran is making moves that are concerning to the United States. The United States has to respond appropriately and accordingly,” he said.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) called the situation with Iran “dangerous” but declined to comment on the additional troops being sent the region until he gets a “full briefing” on the matter.

“The president needs to act carefully and firmly,” Alexander said.

Cramer was asked if he thinks the Trump administration would need to come to Congress for authorization concerning action against Iran.

“It depends on what the goal is. For a declaration of war, at some point, that’s required under our Constitution but we’re not talking about war right now. We’re talking about avoiding or preventing war. I think it’s really important that the White House keep Congress well-informed,” he said. “I don’t think they have to come to us to send troops or redeploy assets in the region. I just hope they are successful at avoiding the need for an eventual congressional action.”