September 3, 2013 at 11:37 AM
Suzan DelBene remains undecided on possible Syria strike
WASHINGTON — The Washington Post is counting U.S. Rep. Suzan DelBene as among 19 House Democrats who are leaning against U.S. military action against Syria. But a spokesman for the Medina freshman said Tuesday DelBene’s position is more accurately “undecided.”
“She wants more information from the administration and to hear more constituent input as the debate occurs over the coming days,” said the spokesman, Viet Shelton.
DelBene’s wait-and-see attitude puts her in company with the biggest bloc of members of Congress. Only about three dozen lawmakers out of 535 in the Senate and the House have come out in support of President Obama’s call for “limited and targeted” military strikes against the Syrian regime. No member from Washington state is in that group.
Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray of Washington, for instance, remain uncommitted on military action.
Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Seattle, on the other hand, has made clear he sees no American interests at stake. But he said the president should be free to proceed with the strikes if he wins congressional approval.
Secretary of State John Kerry, however, has said the administration could act even without such support.
Rep. Adam Smith of Bellevue, the ranking Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee, supports arming Syrian rebels, but is deeply concerned about direct military action.
Two other members of that committee from Washington, Reps. Rick Larsen of Everett and Derek Kilmer of Gig Harbor, say they are studying intelligence and will make their decisions afterward.
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