News / USA

    Some US Lawmakers Demand Congressional Approval on Syria

    FILE - President Barack Obama arrives in State Dining Room of the White House, June 14, 2013.FILE - President Barack Obama arrives in State Dining Room of the White House, June 14, 2013.
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    FILE - President Barack Obama arrives in State Dining Room of the White House, June 14, 2013.
    FILE - President Barack Obama arrives in State Dining Room of the White House, June 14, 2013.
    Cindy Saine
    Some U.S. lawmakers are calling on President Barack Obama to seek congressional approval before authorizing any military strikes in Syria in response to alleged chemical weapon attacks by President Bashar al-Assad.
     
    Although White House spokesman Jay Carney said the president is consulting with House and Senate leaders, he did not say whether Obama will seek authorization from Congress for prospective military actions.
     
    Several Republican and Democratic lawmakers are expressing concern that Obama may order limited military action in Syria without seeking congressional approval.
     
    "I think it’s essential that President Obama comes to Congress, asks for authorization [for a strike on Syria], receives it or not receives it, and then acts with the willingness of the United States Congress," Former House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.). "That’s what President Bush did for previous wars."
     
    "I believe a missile strike against al-Assad forces is imminent, and I think that all we will get from President Obama with getting the help of Congress is he will notify us: ‘in 20 minutes, the strikes will begin,'" she added. "And that will just about be it."
     
    Representative Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) said there is no military solution to the crisis in Syria and is calling for robust Congressional debate before any U.S. military action is taken.
     
    Pressed about calls for congressional authorization, White House spokesman Jay Carney Tuesday indicated the president believes consulting with congressional leaders is enough.
     
    "We are engaging in what we believe our responsibility is here, which is to consult with Congress," he said. "That process is under way."
     
    Congressman Scott Rigell (R-Va.) is asking fellow representatives to sign a letter to the president calling on him to reconvene Congress and seek approval for any military action. Congress is in recess for two more weeks. Rigell and others have invoked the War Powers Resolution, which requires congressional authorization within 60 days of military action, but both Republican and Democratic presidents have disregarded the resolution in the past.
     
    House Speaker John Boehner, a Republican, is calling on the president to consult with Congress on what he considers his viable options.
     
    A few members of Congress support limited military action in Syria, including Republican Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham, who have criticized the president for not acting earlier.

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    Comments
         
    by: Felipe from: Manteiga
    September 03, 2013 12:44 PM
    The fall of al-Assad will complete the dethroning of governments opposed to Arab fundamentalism. In Syria, an outcome analogous to the Brotherhood in Egypt may occur.

    Our bombing should be planned not only to remove contrarian Assad but also to wipe out or at least weaken the opposition aligned with our adversaries and to strenghten those supporting our views and friendly to Israel. Unless proven wrong I am convinced this, and not Assad, is the main objective of our military intervention. Que sera, sera!

    by: Joan Smith from: Miami
    August 29, 2013 4:50 PM
    Today, I discussed the Syrian situation with my 97 year old Mom. We should ask more 90 year olds their opinion. At her age, there is no ego involvement. She said simply, the guilty party has to apologize. Our country seems so afraid of appearing weak. Strength sometimes comes with the simplest solution. So Mr. President and Legislators, put your egos aside and do nothing except encourage Assad to apologize if, indeed, he is the guilty party. When you think about missiles, think of how you would feel if your son was the target.

    by: us from: us
    August 27, 2013 8:50 PM
    How about quit dragging this country into continuous wars, I guess the military industrial complex does not have enough money or power yet.

    by: dominker from: nc
    August 27, 2013 6:28 PM
    why would the pres. ask this so called congress to do anything. they have not done anything for this country for 5 years . im not a fan of obama i dont like where we are headed or anything he has done. but at least he is doing something so we dont look as weak as we are in the rest of the world

    by: wing ding from: chicago
    August 27, 2013 6:11 PM
    Why should he be any different than any preceding president in asking for congressional approval? Anyway, the buffoons who are elected officials will no doubt succumb to the pressures and approve a military action, which we will rue ...

    by: Bob from: U.S.
    August 27, 2013 6:10 PM
    This is the way the Military/Industrial Complex wants it, so the president will attempt to bypass the congress of the U.S. and do it the way he is told by the military/industrial complex that Eisenhower warned us about many years ago, they have their tentacles into every facet of government.....why do we have a congress if the president has the authority to act unilaterially.?

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