Obama Open To Narrowing Language That Would Authorize Syria Strikes


As it seeks votes of approval from Congress on Syria, the Obama administration is “open to working” with legislators to change the language that would authorize the president to use military force, replacing the broad and open-ended resolution with a narrower, limited one, a senior White House official told the Hill Monday.

The draft language of the resolution currently grants Obama permission to use “necessary and appropriate” force. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) indicated earlier that he planned to rewrite and narrow that language, specifically to match Obama’s promise of “no boots on the ground” in Syria. 

“The president made clear that he was not contemplating U.S. boots on the ground or an open-ended intervention, and that he intends to undertake tailored military operations, limited in scope and duration,” the official said, according to the Hill. “We are open to working with Congress on language for the [authorization] within the parameters the president has explained.”


Zoë Schlanger is Frontpage Editor at TPM. Zoë was a TPM intern in 2011, and prior to returning here she was editor in chief of NYU Local, the alternative independent student news site at NYU. Zoë has interned at places like the Nation, InsideClimate News, The Rachel Maddow Show and Gothamist. She can be reached at zoe@talkingpointsmemo.com.