Trump invites congressional leaders to meeting on Turkey

Trump invites congressional leaders to meeting on Turkey
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The White House has invited congressional leadership and key committee members to a meeting with President TrumpDonald John TrumpVenezuela judge orders prison time for 6 American oil executives Trump says he'll leave White House if Biden declared winner of Electoral College The Memo: Biden faces tough road on pledge to heal nation MORE on Wednesday to discuss Turkey in the wake of Ankara's invasion of northern Syria. 

Two sources confirmed to The Hill that the White House had invited leadership in both parties from both the House and Senate to meet with Trump at 3 p.m. 


One of the Hill sources said that chairmen and ranking members from the House and Senate Armed Services Committees, House Foreign Affairs and Senate Foreign Relations had also been invited to the meeting.

The White House powwow would come two days after Trump announced that he was implementing financial penalties on Turkey over its military incursion into northern Syria, ratcheting up tariffs and pausing trade talks. 

The financial penalties followed days of high-profile criticism from Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellAs Biden administration ramps up, Trump legal effort drags on Harris says she has 'not yet' spoken to Pence Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year MORE (R-Ky.) and Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamLet's give thanks to Republican defenders of Democracy Clyburn: Biden falling short on naming Black figures to top posts Feinstein departure from top post sets stage for Judiciary fight MORE (R-S.C.), who warned that it would endanger the Kurds and embolden the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). 

Lawmakers are also considering passing additional legislation to crack down on Ankara and formally break with Trump's decision to draw back troops ahead of Turkey's military operation. 

The House will vote Wednesday on a resolution opposing Trump's decision. It also calls on Turkey to end its military action, calls on the United States to protect the Kurds and calls on the White House "to present a clear and specific plan for the enduring defeat of ISIS."

Though the resolution will put lawmakers on the record on Trump's strategy, it only directly mentions Trump once when it notes that Trump had a phone call with Turkey President Erdogan where they discussed the upcoming Turkish operation and that shortly thereafter the White House announced the decision to pull back troops.

House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiGovernors take heat for violating their own coronavirus restrictions Spending deal clears obstacle in shutdown fight Ocasio-Cortez, Cruz trade jabs over COVID-19 relief: People 'going hungry as you tweet from' vacation MORE (D-Calif.) and Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerUS national security policy in the 117th Congress and a new administration Voters say Biden should make coronavirus vaccine a priority: poll New York City subway service could be slashed 40 percent, officials warn MORE (D-N.Y.) urged support for the resolution in a joint statement on Tuesday.

“Sanity and strength must be immediately restored to America’s national security. We urge all of our colleagues – Democrat and Republican – to support this resolution," they said. 

Lawmakers are also considering slapping additional sanctions on Turkey. Graham and Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenDemocratic senators unveil bill to ban discrimination in financial services industry Senate Democrats call for ramped up Capitol coronavirus testing Democratic senators offer bill to make payroll tax deferral optional for federal workers MORE (D-Md.) are expected to introduce legislation on Thursday, while Reps. Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulOvernight Defense: Pentagon prepping for Trump order to draw down in Afghanistan, Iraq | Questions swirl after DOD purge | 10th service member killed by COVID-19 Former VOA producer sues US global media agency over termination Record number of women to serve in the next Congress MORE (R-Texas) and Eliot EngelEliot Lance EngelTrump relents as GSA informs Biden transition to begin Dozens of progressive groups endorse Joaquin Castro for Foreign Affairs chair Castro pledges to term limit himself if elected Foreign Affairs chair MORE (D-N.Y.) have said they will introduce sanctions legislation.

A senior Democratic aide noted that the House was currently working on the sanctions bill "but it has not been scheduled at this point."

McConnell hasn't committed to bringing any legislation up for a vote. 

“I look forward to discussing with members on both sides and with the administration how the U.S. can stand with our partners and provide strong, principled and consistent global leadership,” McConnell said on Tuesday during a floor speech. 

He didn’t rule out sanctions during a separate interview with Defense News, saying “that’s what we’ll be talking about now that we’re all back together.” A McConnell spokesman confirmed the accuracy of the quote. 

Rebecca Kheel contributed