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Rep. Lee has history of opposing the use of force

The Associated Press
Monday September 17, 2001

WASHINGTON — The only member of Congress to vote against using force against terrorists was also the lone House opponent of using U.S. troops against Serbia three years ago. 

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., came to Congress in 1998 promising to trim defense spending. She said Friday that she opposed the measure backing the use of military force by President Bush after relying on her “moral compass, my conscience and my God for direction.” 

“Our deepest fears now haunt us,” Lee said, referring to the hijacked planes that terrorists plunged into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, leaving thousands missing. “Yet I am convinced that military action will not prevent further acts of international terrorism against the United States.” 

The resolution was approved Friday 98-0 by the Senate and 420-1 in the House. 

When Lee voted against the use of American troops in Serbia in 1998, she argued that the measure gave President Clinton too much authority without congressional approval. 

Lee, 55, represents Oakland and Berkeley, Calif., an overwhelmingly Democratic district. 

A former social worker, she served in the California Assembly and Senate after working for Rep. Ron Dellums, D-Calif. She replaced him when he retired.