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Senator seeks tighter limit on presidential war power

Sen. Arlen Specter (R) of Pennsylvania declared the War Powers Act a failure and introduced legislation Tuesday to require US presidents to get congressional approval in advance before sending troops into combat.

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Mr. Specter said his bill would make an exception only for a case of an attack on US troops or other ''sudden emergency that must be met with military intervention.'' Even in such cases, congressional authorization would be required within five days or else the troops would have to be withdrawn.

Under the present law, passed in 1973, a president may order troops into combat for 60 days, subject to a 30-day extension, without congressional approval.

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