The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to authorize President Obama to conduct a limited U.S. military operation in Syria, the first step toward congressional endorsement of the effort.
The resolution, approved 10-7, supports use of force in a “limited and specified manner against legitimate military targets” during a 60-day period following enactment, with a possible 30-day extension at Obama’s request. The resolution doesn’t authorize use of U.S. ground troops in combat. Sen. Ed Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat, voted “present.”
The committee vote clears the way for consideration by the full Senate. Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, said that will begin Sept. 9 when Congress officially reconvenes after a five-week break.
House and Senate committees quickly scheduled hearings this week after Obama announced Aug. 31 that he would seek congressional approval to use military force against Syria in response to what the U.S. says was the Syrian government’s use of chemical weapons against civilians.
– With assistance from Michael C. Bender, Terry Atlas and Margaret Talev in Washington.