Schumer says Trump strikes 'appropriate,' warns against greater involvement in Syria

 Schumer says Trump strikes 'appropriate,' warns against greater involvement in Syria
© Greg Nash

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerPelosi: Trump Supreme Court pick 'threatens' Affordable Care Act Will Democrats attempt to pack the Supreme Court again? Pelosi slams Trump executive order on pre-existing conditions: It 'isn't worth the paper it's signed on' MORE (D-N.Y.) said Friday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says voters should choose who nominates Supreme Court justice Trump, Biden will not shake hands at first debate due to COVID-19 Pelosi: Trump Supreme Court pick 'threatens' Affordable Care Act MORE's decision to mount a military strike on Syria was "appropriate," but warned against deepening the United States's involvement in the war-torn country. 

"A pinpointed, limited action to punish and hopefully deter Assad from doing this again is appropriate, but the administration has to be careful about not getting us into a greater and more involved war in Syria," Schumer said in a statement.

Schumer's comments came shortly after Trump announced that the U.S., France and the United Kingdom had launched "precision strikes" on targets in Syria in response to an apparent chemical weapons attack in a suburb of Damascus that left dozens dead.

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The U.S. and other Western countries have blamed the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad for mounting the chemical strike last weekend that left more than 40 people dead in the Syrian town of Douma.

Syria and its allies, Russia and Iran, have denied that Assad's government used chemical weapons. Russia accused the U.K. on Friday of staging the attack.

Vice President Pence, who is in Lima, Peru, returned to his hotel on Friday night to make calls notifying congressional leaders of the strike.

Pence spoke with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHawley warns Schumer to steer clear of Catholic-based criticisms of Barrett Senate GOP set to vote on Trump's Supreme Court pick before election Harris slams Trump's Supreme Court pick as an attempt to 'destroy the Affordable Care Act' MORE (R-Ky.), Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanKenosha will be a good bellwether in 2020 At indoor rally, Pence says election runs through Wisconsin Juan Williams: Breaking down the debates MORE (R-Wis.) and House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi: Trump Supreme Court pick 'threatens' Affordable Care Act Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for SCOTUS confirmation hearings before election Will Democrats attempt to pack the Supreme Court again? MORE (D-Calif.).

Pence was apparently unable to immediately reach Schumer, who was on a plane, the vice president's deputy chief of staff told reporters traveling in Peru.

An aide to the vice president emailed a member of Schumer's staff saying that Pence needed to speak with the senator, according to Pence's team.

Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerFBI director casts doubt on concerns over mail-in voting fraud Democrats call for declassifying election threats after briefing by Trump officials It's time to upgrade benefits MORE (Va.), the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, also voiced support on Friday for a "measured" military response in Syria. But he similarly warned in a statement against taking actions that could "further destabilize" the region or expand the conflict.

"While the U.S. and our allies must not turn a blind eye to Assad's vile and inhumane attacks against his own citizens, military action in Syria must be measured, as part of a coherent strategy to prevent Assad from using chemical weapons without further destabilizing an already-volatile region or inadvertently expanding the conflict," he said.