Central Texas politicians spoke out Wednesday in opposition of the president’s call to strike Syria.
“(President Barack Obama’s) failed to make the case that a short, limited military campaign would promote our vital interests and our national security,” said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, during a speech on the Senate floor Wednesday morning.
In an afternoon interview with the media, Cornyn said the plan proposed by Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry is “poorly conceived, so foolishly telegraphed and virtually guaranteed to fail.” He also said it lacks clear and realistic objectives.
“I’m not saying I would never vote for it, but not under these circumstances,” Cornyn said. “Assad is no doubt a butcher and a murderer. He’s in the fight for his life and the fight for continued power.”
In the House of Representatives, both Reps. John Carter, R-Round Rock, and Roger Williams, R-Austin, announced Wednesday they plan to vote against the plan.
Williams said the administration’s decision to delay a vote pending a diplomatic option with Russia shows it is “in over its head.”
“The president’s original plan was to strike Syria ... and send a sign to all nations that the use of chemical weapons will not be tolerated. But by stalling for nearly a month while broadcasting our potential strategy to the entire world, the U.S. is now in the weakest possible position,” Williams said.
“I’ve said from the very beginning that in order for me to support such a strike, the president would first have to define our mission, our exit strategy, and the costs associated. After two briefings from the White House, they still haven’t answered any of these. It is not the responsibility of our men and women in uniform to risk their lives enforcing the president’s red line when our own national security is not at stake,” he added.
Carter also cited the president’s “red line,” calling it a “political agenda,” and lacking in evidence or facts to justify an act of war against Syria.
“A political agenda is no reason to put our sons and daughters in danger or involve our country in another costly war at a time when we are dealing with a budgetary crisis, the president’s damaging sequester and reduced troop levels,” Carter said. “There are many issues that our country should be focused on and kicking a hornets’ nest is not one of them.”