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Paul blocks Senate vote on House-passed Syria resolution

Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden takes office, calls for end to 'uncivil war' Senate confirms Biden's intel chief, giving him first Cabinet official McConnell faces conservative backlash over Trump criticism MORE (R-Ky.) blocked an effort to bring a House-passed resolution formally breaking with President TrumpDonald TrumpMcCarthy says he told Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene he disagreed with her impeachment articles against Biden Biden, Trudeau agree to meet next month Trump planned to oust acting AG to overturn Georgia election results: report MORE’s Syria strategy up for a vote.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDivide and conquer or unite and prosper Roe is not enough: Why Black women want an end to the Hyde Amendment National Guard back inside Capitol after having been moved to parking garage 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 EngelState Department sets up new bureau for cybersecurity and emerging technologies How Congress dismissed women's empowerment 2020: A year in photos MORE (D-N.Y.) and Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulCheney tests Trump grip on GOP post-presidency US ambassador to Israel Twitter account briefly includes West Bank, Gaza Biden urged to reverse Pompeo-Trump move on Houthis MORE (R-Texas) in the House and Sens. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezSenate presses Biden's pick for secretary of State on Iran, China, Russia and Yemen Year-end deal creates American Latino, women's history museums Lawmakers call for including creation of Latino, women's history museums in year-end spending deal MORE (D-N.J.) and Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden's crisis agenda hits headwinds Bipartisan Senate gang to talk with Biden aide on coronavirus relief Senators vet Buttigieg to run Transportation Department 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."