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Congressman O'Rourke calls for president's "case" for US action in Syria
By: Stacey Welsh
EL PASO, Texas -- United States Rep. Beto O'Rourke (D-Texas) said President Barack Obama has yet to make a case for U.S. military action against Syria.
O'Rourke said President Obama would have to prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the Syrian government did use chemical weapons against its own people.
"I want to know what the consequences of U.S. action are. Who else will be dragged into this conflict? What is the totality of our commitment?" O'Rourke said.
Because of this uncertainty, O'Rourke said he is happy with President Obama's decision to seek Congress' approval.
"It's my opinion that under the U.S. Constitution, only the U.S. Congress can declare war. We are the people's representatives, and on probably the weightiest most difficult decision that a country can make, the American people need to be engaged," O'Rourke said.
O'Rourke also said he plans to see what constituents in El Paso think before he makes a decision on how to vote.
"I also have been soliciting opinions on Twitter and Facebook, and we've literally received hundreds of individual responses; the vast majority saying no," O'Rourke said.
That's the same response KFOX14 received when we asked people what they thought of the possibility of U.S. military action in Syria.
"[There are] domestic issues that we have happening right now that we should really be focusing on as well; especially with budget cuts and things like that. We really need to be focusing here instead of taking things foreign right now," East El Paso resident April Hinojosa said.
Because President Obama said, right now, there will be no "boots on the ground" in Syria, Ft. Bliss said its soldiers and units would not be affected.
"All we know is if we do engage in hostilities we will be unable to predict every consequence. We don't know what the intended effects of that involvement will be," O'Rourke said.