On Saturday, President Obama said he has decided to strike Syria over the recent use of chemical warfare agents against civilians, but said he has also decided to seek approval from Congress.
“I have decided that the U.S. should take military action against Syrian military targets,” he said, adding that such action would be limited in scope.
“This will not be an open ended intervention. We would not put boots on the ground. Instead our action would be designed to be limited in duration and scope,” he said.
“I’m confident we can hold the Assad regime accountable. We are prepared to strike whenever we choose. It will be effective tomorrow, or next week, or one month from now. I’m prepared to give that order,” he added.
Obama said he is “prepared” to give the order, but “will seek authorization for the use of force from the American people’s representatives in Congress.”
The president also said he hopes Congress can put aside partisan differences to do what he says is the right thing.
“Today I’m asking Congress to send a message to the world that we are united as one nation,” he said.
But many do not approve getting involved into a new conflict in the Middle East, and Congress is not united on the issue. A report at The Blaze said a protester could be heard shouting, “Obama hands off Syria.”
Obama also said he has the power to authorize a strike without Congressional approval, but House GOP leaders disputed that.
“Under the Constitution, the responsibility to declare war lies with Congress,” said a joint statement released by Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash.
“In consultation with the president, we expect the House to consider a measure the week of September 9th,” the GOP leaders added. “This provides the president time to make his case to Congress and the American people.”
The Pentagon has already deployed five destroyers to the region, and could remain on a war footing for some time.
“We are prepared to strike whenever we choose,” Obama said.
- Sen. Ted Cruz: ‘Arrogant’ Obama administration pushing Obamacare, war in Syria
- Obama angers many with reference to ‘my military’
- Obama meets with Magic Johnson, snubs Congress on Syria
- Obama weighing two-day military strike against Syria
- Poll: Only 17 percent see President Obama as a strong military leader
- Ted Cruz: Will Obama do background checks before giving arms to Syrian rebels?
- President Obama fiddles as the world burns
- Reporter to WH: ‘Doesn’t there come a point where you have to make a decision?’
- UK paper asks: Is Barack Obama the weakest President in history?
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