Senate sets up pro forma to file Syria resolution

On Wednesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee cleared the resolution authorizing military force against Syria in a 10-7 vote. The resolution is more likely to pass in the Senate than in the House where most Republicans have come out against the idea because it gives President Obama too much discretion.

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The resolution limits the administration to 90 days of military action in Syria and makes clear that the U.S. goal is to end the rule of Syrian President Bashar Assad, who has used chemical weapons against his own people.

Some Democrats who oppose the resolution have expressed concern that the U.S. should not get involved in another military mission in the Middle East as the U.S. is drawing troops out of Afghanistan. The administration has said it would not put any U.S. boots on the ground in Syria.

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-N.H.) opposed the initial resolution from the White House, but applauded the announcement Thursday that the full Senate would begin deliberation on the matter next week.

“I remain skeptical of the United States going alone, and about what comes after. But this will be an important Senate debate, on deadly serious issues, about a resolution that may well see further changes,” Leahy said. “It makes sense to have the debate and then decide, not to decide and then have the debate.”