McConnell: Obama working on military force authorization against Islamic State

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President Barack Obama speaks alongside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R), Republican of Kentucky, prior to a meeting of the bipartisan, bicameral leadership of Congress in the Cabinet Room at the White House on Tuesday. | Getty Images

WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says President Barack Obama is working on sending Congress a new authorization for the use of military force against the Islamic State group.

The Kentucky Republican was one of several congressional leaders who met with the president Tuesday morning. McConnell told reporters at a Capitol Hill news conference that Obama informed them he would make the request for explicit powers in the U.S. battle against militant extremists.

McConnell said the administration request will be a good starting point and a marker for where the administration stands. He said Congress could use that document to work on new authority.

The administration has relied on congressional authorizations that former President George W. Bush used to justify military action after Sept. 11.

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