House Intelligence chief says Congress will 'rise to occasion,' back strike


House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) predicted Sunday that Congress will authorize a military strike against Syria in response to the Assad regime’s alleged use of chemical weapons.

“I think at the end of the day Congress will rise to the occasion,” he said on the CNN program State of the Union. “This is a national security issue.”

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He called the evidence of chemical attacks powerful.

Rogers’s prediction differed from two other Republicans appearing on Sunday morning talk shows. Both Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) and Sen. James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeMcCain backs Pentagon nominee despite concerns over defense industry ties GOP senators ask Trump for meeting on biofuels mandate Trump feuds endangering tax reform MORE (R-Okla.) expressed doubt that Congress would approve military action.

King, who supports military action, said he believed if the vote were held today, it would fail. But Rogers said he believed support could be win from a Congress that has often opposed Obama.

“This isn’t about Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaOvernight Cybersecurity: What we learned from Carter Page's House Intel testimony | House to mark up foreign intel reform law | FBI can't access Texas shooter's phone | Sessions to testify at hearing amid Russia scrutiny Russian social media is the modern-day Trojan horse Trump records robo-call for Gillespie: He'll help 'make America great again' MORE versus the Congress, this isn’t about Republicans versus Democrats,” Rogers said.

“I think the Congress will rise to its Article 1 constitutional responsibilities to provide for the general defense of the United States, but it is going to take that healthy debate to get there,” Rogers said.

President Obama on Sunday said he would seek congressional authorization for a strike, even though the administration believes it has the authority to act without lawmakers’ consent.