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Paul blocks Senate vote on House-passed Syria resolution

Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulTim Scott sparks buzz in crowded field of White House hopefuls Sherrod Brown calls Rand Paul 'kind of a lunatic' for not wearing mask Overnight Health Care: WHO-backed Covax gets a boost from Moderna MORE (R-Ky.) blocked an effort to bring a House-passed resolution formally breaking with President TrumpDonald TrumpCaitlyn Jenner says election was not 'stolen,' calls Biden 'our president' Overnight Health Care: FDA authorizes Pfizer vaccine for adolescents | Biden administration reverses limits on LGBTQ health protections Overnight Defense: US fires 30 warning shots at Iranian boats | Kabul attack heightens fears of Afghan women's fates | Democratic Party leaders push Biden on rejoining Iran deal MORE’s Syria strategy up for a vote.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerHouse conservatives take aim at Schumer-led bipartisan China bill There will be no new immigration law under Biden, unless he changes course This week: Congressional leaders to meet with Biden amid GOP reckoning 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 EngelLawmakers on hot mic joke 'aisle hog' Engel absent from Biden address: 'He'd wait all day' Bowman to deliver progressive response to Biden's speech to Congress Liberal advocacy group stirs debate, discomfort with primary challenges MORE (D-N.Y.) and Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulSenate Intelligence panel working on legislation around mandatory cyber breach notification McCarthy unveils House GOP task forces, chairs Republican, Democratic lawmakers urge fully funding US assistance to Israel MORE (R-Texas) in the House and Sens. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezJuan Williams: A breakthrough on immigration? Biden rebuffs Democrats, keeps refugee admissions at 15,000 Bottom line MORE (D-N.J.) and Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungSenate to vote on bill aimed at countering China's influence this month House conservatives take aim at Schumer-led bipartisan China bill The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden reverses Trump limits on transgender protections 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."