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Paul blocks Senate vote on House-passed Syria resolution

Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulMichigan Republican isolating after positive coronavirus test GOP Rep. Mike Bost tests positive for COVID-19 Top Democrats introduce resolution calling for mask mandate, testing program in Senate MORE (R-Ky.) blocked an effort to bring a House-passed resolution formally breaking with President TrumpDonald John TrumpJudge rules to not release Russia probe documents over Trump tweets Trump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida MORE’s Syria strategy up for a vote.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerTrump casts doubt on hopes for quick stimulus deal after aides expressed optimism Schumer says he had 'serious talk' with Feinstein, declines to comment on Judiciary role Democrats seem unlikely to move against Feinstein MORE (D-N.Y.) tried to get consent Thursday to bring up the resolution, arguing that “we’re in real trouble."

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“The most important thing we can do right now is send President Trump a message that Congress, the vast majority of Democrats and Republicans, demand he reverse course,” Schumer said. 

The resolution passed the House on Wednesday by a wide margin in 354-60 vote. All 60 votes against the resolution came from Republicans. 
 
Under Senate rules any one senator can try to set up a vote on a bill. But because that requires unanimous consent, any one senator can block it.
  
Paul, a libertarian-leaning GOP senator, objected to Schumer's request for a vote, arguing that he was trying to sidestep the Constitution. 
 
"He should come to the floor and say that we are ready to declare war. We are ready to authorize force, and we are going to stick our troops in the middle of this messy, messy, five-sided civil war where we would be ostensibly opposed to the Turkish government that has made an incursion," Paul argued. 
 
Paul argued that the House-passed resolution would also do "nothing to fix the problem" and said he was offering a countering proposal that would also stop arms sales to Turkey.
 
The resolution — sponsored by Reps. Eliot EngelEliot Lance EngelIs Trump a better choice for Jewish voters than Biden? Overnight Defense: Trump says he's leaving Walter Reed, 'feeling really good' after COVID-19 treatment | White House coronavirus outbreak grows | Dems expand probe into Pompeo speeches House Democrats push forward on probe of Pompeo's political speeches MORE (D-N.Y.) and Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulBiden endorses Texas Democratic House candidate Julie Oliver Warren, Porter to headline progressive fundraiser supporting seven swing state candidates Bipartisan action needed to counter Chinese influence MORE (R-Texas) in the House and Sens. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezWatchdog confirms State Dept. canceled award for journalist who criticized Trump Kasie Hunt to host lead-in show for MSNBC's 'Morning Joe' Senators ask for removal of tariffs on EU food, wine, spirits: report MORE (D-N.J.) and Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungRepublicans: Supreme Court won't toss ObamaCare Vulnerable Republicans break with Trump on ObamaCare lawsuit Senate GOP eyes early exit MORE (R-Ind.) in the Senate — "opposes the decision to end certain United States efforts to prevent Turkish military operations against Syrian Kurdish forces in Northeast Syria."
 
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."
 
Schumer added on Thursday that he will try again to pass the resolution and argued that Paul's decision could risk American lives. 
 
"I think that's a horrible decision. I think it could well risk the lives of Americans down the road," he said. "I think it will certainly risk the lives of many more Kurds who are our allies."