Rep. DesJarlais Pushes To Block US Involvement In Syria, In Sharp Contrast To Sen. Corker’s Call

Tennessee Congressman Scott DesJarlais has introduced legislation that would forbid US military involvement in Syria.  It’s the opposite position of a fellow Republican, Sen. Bob Corker, who has been outspoken in support of the idea.

Rep. Scott DesJarlais visits US troops in Afghanistan, in 2011. His legislation would prohibit US assistance to Syrian rebel groups. DesJarlais says his bill is similar to a proposal introduced in the Senate last week, which has bipartisan support. Image: Office of Rep. DesJarlais/Flickr

Rep. Scott DesJarlais visits US troops in Afghanistan, in 2011. His legislation would prohibit US assistance to Syrian rebel groups. DesJarlais says his bill is similar to a proposal introduced in the Senate last week, which has bipartisan support. Image: Office of Rep. DesJarlais/Flickr

DesJarlais’ bill would prohibit the Pentagon, the CIA, and any other agency from funding operations in Syria.  He says the US would put its own security at risk, by sending weapons to groups that purportedly have ties to Al Queada.

But Sen. Corker is pressing for a more active role in Syria. He says the US has a vested interest in helping moderates topple the regime of Bashar al-Assad. Corker has yet to convince several members of Tennessee’s congressional delegation. Democrat Jim Cooper, along with Republicans Diane Black, Jimmy Duncan, and Phil Roe have expressed reservations about increased US involvement.

Senator Lamar Alexander says US intervention is likely, but the Administration should consult with Congress first.  And he said the President should avoid getting US forces involved in another war in the Middle East.

 

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