Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) strongly supports the Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act of 2017, introduced by Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) and Sen. Edward Markey (D-Mass.). The legislation would prohibit the president from launching a nuclear first strike without a declaration of war by Congress.
In 1974, President Richard Nixon famously said, "I can go back into my office and pick up the telephone and in 25 minutes 70 million people will be dead." The issue of nuclear first use is more urgent now that President Donald Trump has the power to launch a nuclear war at a moment’s notice.
That is why we are urging you to sign PSR’s petition to keep the president’s finger off the nuclear button. Join over 500,000 people who have signed a petition supporting the Markey-Lieu bill.
“The Markey-Lieu bill illustrates how our nuclear weapons procedures undermine basic democratic principles,” said Jeff Carter, executive director of PSR, in a written statement, “Any use of these weapons would result in massive loss of life, a humanitarian catastrophe and long-term climate disruption. No individual should have unlimited, unchecked authority to unleash such destructive power, and yet current law permits any president to launch a nuclear first strike on nothing more than a whim. This bill ensures that such a catastrophe will never occur, while doing nothing that would interfere with a president’s ability to defend the U.S. if it were under nuclear attack.”
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