How our lawmakers are responding to U.S.-Iran tensions

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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)-- As people across the nation debate rising tensions with Iran, Wisconsin lawmakers are also saying their piece.

Previously, the U.S. military alleged Iran had fired a missile at another drone last week that was responding to the attack on two oil tankers near the Gulf of Oman. The U.S. blames Iran for the attack on the ships; Tehran denies it was involved. (Source: MGN)

What has happened so far?

On Jan. 3, a U.S. military drone fired missiles at vehicles near Baghdad International Airport, killing Iranian general Qasem Soleimani and Iraqi militia commanders.

Five days later, Iran retaliated by firing almost 2 dozen missiles at two military bases in Iraq housing American soldiers. The Trump administration says no Americans were injured in that attack.

How are Wisconsin lawmakers responding?

Sen. Ron Johnson (R), who sits on the powerful Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, called for Iran to deescalate and showed support for American troops overseas.

“Iran, the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism, has been escalating its malign actions for years. It is time for Iran to de-escalate and end its terrorist acts and use of proxies. Americans will continue to support the brave men and women who have volunteered to keep us safe,” Sen. Johnson posted on Faceook.

“For everyone’s sake, I pray there are no casualties and that Iran does not continue its escalation,” Johnson posted.

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) criticized efforts to start a new war in the Middle East, though also said that “it’s good” general Qasem Soleimani is dead.

“The American people are sick and tired of sending young men & women to war in the Middle East. I support @timkaine’s resolution to ensure Trump comes to Congress first before pursuing any military action against Iran and starting another war,” Sen Baldwin posted to Twitter.

Rep. Mark Pocan (D) said in an interview with NBC15 News on Wednesday that “This is a less safe world under [President] Donald Trump."

“Whether it be him backing out of the nuclear deal that we had with Iran, whether it be the fact that we have 15,000 more troops in the Middle East than we did a few months ago, or the fact that he assassinated another world leader, using very flimsy evidence and unfortunately not going to Congress as required by the Constitution,” Pocan said in the interview. [Watch our interview with Rep. Pocan at the top of the article]

Rep. Bryan Steil (R) criticized Iran for destabilizing the Middle East as well as showed support for U.S. troops in the region.

“Iran actively works to destabilize countries in the Middle East. Soleimani was instrumental in Iran’s sponsorship of terrorism. Our thoughts are with our service members and U.S. personnel who are threatened by Iran,” Rep. Steil posted to Twitter.