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vietnam war

During the Vietnam War the president assumed increasing amounts of power. Why did this alarm congress?


Because the Vietnam War was an insurgency, or rebellion, it required a completely different kind of fighting.  The United States Congress has not declared war since December 8, 1941, when it did so against Japan.  Ever since then, the President has ordered troops into harm's way almost at their sole discretion.  Congress' only limit is that they can eventually deny funding for the war, but this is almost always politically unpopular because it appears in some way unpatriotic.

Also keep in mind that Nixon was President for the second half of the Vietnam War, and his corruption extended into many areas, including his carrying out a secret bombing campaign in Laos and Cambodia and special forces incursions into those areas without Congressional knowledge or approval.  This alarmed them as anti-war sentiment was brewing at the time, and they worried about the safety of their seats, especially if they were in Nixon's Republican Party at the time.

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