White House skips legal deadline on Libya

May 20, 2011 - 7:28 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is skipping a legal deadline to seek congressional authorization of the military action in Libya — but few on the Hill are objecting.

Under the War Powers Resolution of 1973 a president can only send troops into combat for 60 days without congressional mandate. That deadline fell Friday, but in absence of pressure from Congress, White House officials say they think they're on solid ground continuing U.S. involvement in the mission, now led by NATO, without formal congressional sign-off — as long as consultations with Congress continue.

In that spirit President Barack Obama sent a letter to congressional leaders Friday saying U.S. involvement remains critical and welcoming congressional input.