Iraq War at 20: Who voted for it, who didn’t, and where are they now?

Jonathan Cohn
3 min readMar 20, 2023

Today marks the 20th anniversary of the start of the Iraq War. There will be many incisive retrospectives of this disastrous decision and its legacy in lives lost, trillions wasted, insecurity fomented, and lessons not yet learned.

What I want to offer is a quick reminder of who voted for it, who didn’t, and who’s still here.

Although the war would not begin until March 2003, the House passed the Authorization of the Use of Military Force (AUMF) for Iraq in October 2002. The vote was 296 to 133. 215 Republicans and 81 Democrats voted for it. 126 Democrats, 6 Republicans, and 1 Independent (Sanders) voted against it.

Of those 127 NAY votes from the Democratic caucus, 29 are still there:

Earl Blumenauer (OR-03)

James Clyburn (SC-06)

Danny Davis (IL-07)

Diana DeGette (CO-01)

Rosa DeLauro (CT-03)

Lloyd Doggett (TX-35)

Anna Eshoo (CA-18)

Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18)

Marcy Kaptur (OH-09)

Dan Kildee (MI-05)

Rick Larsen (WA-02)

John Larson (CT-01)

Barbara Lee (CA-13)

Zoe Lofgren (CA-19)

Doris Matsui (CA-06)

Betty McCollum (MN-04)

Jim McGovern (MA-02)

Gregory Meeks (NY-05)

Jerry Nadler (NY-10)

Grace Napolitano (CA-32)

Richard Neal (MA-01)

Frank Pallone (NJ-06)

Nancy Pelosi (CA-12)

Jan Schakowsky (IL-09)

Bobby Scott (VA-03)

Bennie Thompson (MS-02)

Mike Thompson (CA-05)

Nydia Velázquez (NY-07)

Maxine Waters (CA-43)

5 are now in the Senate:

Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)

Sherrod Brown (D-OH)

Ben Cardin (D-MD)

Robert Menendez (D-NJ)

Bernie Sanders (I-VT)

Of the 81 YEA votes of the Democratic caucus, 7 are currently in the House, and 1 is in the Senate.

Here are the 7 in the House:

Sanford Bishop (GA-02)

Steny Hoyer (MD-05)

Stephen Lynch (MA-08)

Bill Pascrell (NJ-09)

Adam Schiff (CA-28)

Brad Sherman (CA-30)

Adam Smith (WA-09)

The 1 in the Senate is (surprisingly) Ed Markey (D-MA).

The next day, the Senate had its vote: 77–23. 48 Republicans and 29 Democrats voted YEA. 21 Democrats, 1 Republican (Lincoln Chaffee of Rhode Island), and 1 Independent (Jim Jeffords of Vermont) voted NAY.

Of the 21 Democrats who voted NAY, 5 are still in the Senate:

Dick Durbin (D-IL)

Patty Murray (D-WA)

Jack Reed (D-RI)

Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)

Ron Wyden (D-OR)

And of the 29 Democrats who voted YEA, 4 are still in the Senate:

Maria Cantwell (D-WA)

Tom Carper (D-DE)

Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)

Chuck Schumer (D-NY)

Among the Senate yeses were, of course, President Joe Biden, former Secretary of State and presidential candidate John Kerry, and former Secretary of State and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

I did not bother to go through the list of Republicans. As you can see, the Republicans were nearly unanimous in both houses of Congress, so “Which Republicans who voted for it are still there?” is basically the same as “Which Republicans who were there in 2002 are still there?” No Republican dissenters are still in Congress.



Jonathan Cohn

Editor. Bibliophile. Gadfly. Environmentalist. Super-volunteer for progressive campaigns. Boston by way of Baltimore, London, NYC, DC, and Philly.