President Obama wants the support of Congress on his plan to use military force in Syria. His administration says the U.S. must do something, because it says Syria's president has used chemical weapons against his own people. But will Alabama's Congressional delegation go along?
A proposed military strike against Syria has lawmakers in Washington taking sides -- and not just by political party.
We were only allowed a brief time to speak with Congresswoman Martha Roby. She says she does not know enough about the Syrian situation to even know what questions to ask...except these...
"Well, first I want to hear from them. I can't even ask the right questions until I hear the intelligence that has been put out there that I will be participating, but again, the most important question is, 'what is our objective? What do we hope to gain from this?' And then in asking that question, the follow up question is, 'what next?'" Said Roby.
She says she's already participated in numerous calls and briefings with the White House, National Security, the State Department and the Department of Defense concerning possible military force against the Syrian government.
"I would say it's really tough on our congress people because there's probably no definitive answer at this point-- what happens if you do it?" Said 23-year retired airforce colonel, Bob Taffet.
But as far as what's next, Taffet says at this stage a military strike could help -- but combat troops would not.
"Putting our boots on the ground in Syria is not going to help us at all in this situation. Now, saying that, we also need to say 'hey, stop! You have just hit that red line when you used chemical weapons," Said Taffet.
As we mentioned, Congress isn't back in session until Monday, but what's important is the Senate Foreign Relations Committee did take a vote today. It voted 10 to 7 to support the use of military force against Syria within 90 days, but not the use of combat troops on the ground. This vote was not split along party lines -- some Democrats supported it, others were opposed. The same was true for Republicans, so it's not easy to predict how Congress as a whole would vote.
Congresswoman Roby says she'll be listening to classified briefings next week. She says while she continues her "Martha Listens" Town Hall tour, she wants to hear from Alabamians about whether they think the U.S. should take action.
While President Obama wants the support of Congress, he says he still has the authority to act on his own.