- Jan 16, 2003
- Reaction score
http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/08/31/200963/obama-risks-embarrassing-loss.html#.UiOS_Dbn-Ul This is indeed what happens when one puts their mouth in gear without engaging their brain...WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is taking a risk by asking Congress to approve airstrikes against Syria. The potential payoff is that he’ll win the kind of vote that signals broad popular support, giving him a stronger hand in facing Syrian President Bashar Assad and perhaps other dictators later in such regimes as Iran.
But there are military and political risks in the process.
Militarily, a desperate Assad could use the time while Obama waits for a Congressional debate to launch another chemical weapon attack, either in his own country or elsewhere in the Middle East, turning a civil war into a regional conflict. “Ultimately, I think he felt he was going to be a target from both the left and the right if he did it alone, and with few significant allies overseas, I don’t think he wanted to be isolated,” said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion at Marist College in New York. “This puts the ball in Congress’s court and they either join and he gets policy and political cover or they oppose.”
Just days ago, British Prime Minister David Cameron suffered a stunning defeat when Parliament rejected participating in any attack on Syria. Obama believes Congress will approve the resolution, though the White House has not counted votes, according to senior administration officials speaking on the condition of anonymity as a matter of White House policy.
But, the officials also said Obama does not rule out acting on his own if lawmakers fail to act. If that happened, he would only further antagonize a divided Congress that already rejects many of his proposals.