Sen. Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineIran resolution supporters fear impeachment will put it on back burner House war powers sponsor expects to take up Senate version of resolution Sens. Kaine, Lee: 'We should not be at war with Iran unless Congress authorizes it' MORE (D-Va.) said he was disappointed that Lebanon failed to elect a new president over the weekend.

“I was disappointed with parliament’s failure to elect a new president in Lebanon,” Kaine said Sunday. “Political consensus and stability are essential to addressing the myriad of internal and external challenges currently facing Lebanon.”


Over the weekend Lebanon President Michel Suleiman's six-year term expired but the parliament failed to select a new leader. Lawmakers are worried about the leadership vacuum as the country deals with a surge of refugees from neighboring Syria, which is involved in a civil war.

“I urge all parties to engage in constructive dialogue to ensure that a deeper political crisis can be averted,” said Kaine, who serves on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. “2014 is an important year for Lebanese democracy and I implore all parties to further incubate the culture of dialogue and compromise that is vital to Lebanon’s political future.”

Lebanon's government system requires that the president be Christian while the prime minister is a Sunni Muslim and the parliament speaker is a Shiite Muslim as part of a power-sharing deal. The reason the parliament has failed to pick a new leader is because lawmakers influenced by the Islamic group Hezbollah have boycotted the process.

Sectarian divisions in Lebanon are increasing as more Syrian refugees enter the country.