Washington (CNN)– With bipartisan frustration mounting in Congress over the president's handling of military action in Libya, House Republican leaders are planning to hold votes this week to use the power of the purse to limit the mission.
House GOP sources tell CNN that one potential option is a vote to prohibit funding for any ground troops in Libya. Though there are no U.S. ground troops currently committed there, the House GOP sources say this would be one way to prevent the mission from escalating, and at the same time give lawmakers a chance to express their unhappiness.
The Republican sources say that is one of several options GOP leaders are considering for votes this week, likely Thursday. They underscore that no decisions will be made until top GOP lawmakers return Tuesday from a long weekend in their districts.
"Ultimately [the legislation] needs to have enough teeth for it to be to worth it," said one senior House GOP aide.
The House was already planning to take up the FY 2012 Defense spending bill this coming week, and lawmakers like Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, plan to push a measure to cut off funding for the Libya mission.
The GOP sources say they're likely to hold a separate Libya vote or votes before the House debates the Defense bill, in large part to allow lawmakers to channel their displeasure into legislation that doesn't go as far as Kucinich's.
A growing number of House Republicans as well as Democrats were already upset that President Obama did not seek Congressional authorization for the Libya mission, which they believe is required under the War Powers Act. The White House argued last week in a report to Congress that military action is so limited that it doesn't need Congressional authorization.
But House GOP sources say rank and file who disagree with that are now even more upset since the New York Times reported Saturday that a lead attorney for the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel as well as Counsel at the Pentagon argued internally that the president does in fact need Congressional authorization for the Libya mission, and the president overruled them.
To be sure, despite growing frustration over Libya lawmakers in both parties are still divided over how far Congress should go with regard to the Libya mission.
While many oppose the president's handling of Libya and want to withdraw U.S. support, others worry about holding a vote that could have a negative impact on US relationships with other countries.
"A lot of people were worried if we abandoned the mission we'd be letting down allies abroad and that was a major problem," the aide said.
One of the GOP sources pointed out that the Republican leadership is facing the same dilemma it did earlier this month when Kucinich was pushing a resolution that would have withdrawn all U.S. forces from the Libya mission.
To prevent that from passing, House Speaker John Boehner was forced to counter with a watered down version that gave the president two weeks to send Congress information justifying the U.S. strategy in Libya.