The one-year mark of new U.S. military operations in Iraq is Saturday.
And lawmakers still haven’t authorized the fight.
“The theater of battle is growing,” Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., said. “We’ve seen other groups swearing allegiance to [the Islamic State group]. The Turks are getting involved. We’ve seen reports that the U.S. can take military action against Syria if they try to mess with our anti-ISIL fighters.
“This thing is creeping and growing. And Congress has not said anything about it.”
ISIL is an alternative acronym for the Islamic State militant group.
Kaine, who for the past year has been the leading voice for a new military authorization of force in the region, expressed frustration and dismay to reporters Thursday that those efforts so far have been unsuccessful.
White House officials last year started airstrikes and military training work in Iraq under the legal logic that previous force authorizations covered the threat posed by Islamic State fighters. But administration officials relented somewhat earlier this year, sending a new authorization draft to Congress for consideration.