Reid Backs Obama on Libya: ‘This Thing Will Be Over Before We Know it’

BY News Desk  June 17, 2011 at 5:15 PM EST

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Friday stood by President Obama’s assertion that the War Powers Act does not apply to the American mission in Libya and thus, does not need congressional approval.

“This thing will be over before we know it,” Reid predicted in an interview with Jim Lehrer, which airs in full on Friday’s NewsHour broadcast.

Reid’s take on the War Powers Act aligns with the White House and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, but some rifts within the Democratic caucus have come to light this week.

Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, the No.2 Democrat in the Senate behind Reid, said Friday that “Congress alone has the constitutional authority and responsibility to declare war.”

Reid told Lehrer that he was not sure whether a vote would occur in the Senate over authorization of the Libya mission.

On the issue of the impending American troop drawdown in Afghanistan, Reid said he is confident that the drawdown would be substantial.

Watch the full interview.