Top House Democrat open to 'boots on the ground' to fight ISIS

Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) said Sunday that the U.S. might need “some boots on the ground” to fight the militant group the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), adding that the U.S. should consider airstrikes in Syria.

“Ultimately, we may have some boots on the ground there,” he said on "Fox News Sunday."

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Engel, the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, added “that’s not something I want,” but said there are no easy choices. The U.S. can't “put our head in the sand,” he added.

Engel has consistently been more hawkish than President Obama, and called for U.S. airstrikes in Syria last summer after the chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government.

He again raised that possibility on Sunday, saying the Syrian opposition had asked for strikes outside the city of Aleppo.

“I think we should consider doing it because this is one war,” he said.

Sen. Ron JohnsonRon JohnsonSenators urge White House to speed cyber policy updates Mellman: Fissures and factions Encryption commission bill picks up more backers MORE (R-Wis.), appearing at the same time, said President Obama had recently met with members of the Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees to discuss a new authorization for the use of force in Iraq. 

Johnson called that a “good sign” and said “I’m glad that President Obama is finally beginning to act.” 

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