Region’s reps in Congress hesitant on Syria

There’s no better indication of the hesitation to strike Syria than in upstate New York.

Three of the region’s representatives in Congress all expressed hesitation and a lack of support Tuesday for military involvement there, on the same day that President Barack Obama made his latest comments to the American people on Syria.

Statement from Tom Reed:

“I respect and appreciate the President heeding the call to present his message directly to the American people. However, I remain opposed to U.S. military intervention in Syria. The American people have not been supportive of intervention in Syria and residents of the 23rd district are overwhelmingly opposed to going down the path of military intervention. We remain open to diplomatic alternatives, however, we must be careful in weighing future implications on those alternatives. It is my job to take concerns of the 23rd district to Washington and if we are asked to vote on the President’s resolution seeking congressional authorization, I remain opposed.”

Statement from Richard Hanna: 

I have spoken to hundreds of constituents in the 22nd Congressional District. All are bone tired of war and appropriately skeptical of another overseas military engagement.

The use of poison gas to cause the wanton extermination of children and innocent civilians in Syria brings immeasurable anguish to all of us. The question has been put to Congress – should we respond with military force?

In my opinion, serious questions have not been adequately answered: Is there an outcome that’s predictable? Do we fully understand the repercussions of taking sides in a civil war? What would the impact be on vulnerable Syrian populations, including Christians? Would our engagement do more harm than good? What is the potential for a larger, long-term involvement?

Therefore, I am unconvinced that U.S. military involvement at this time would improve the situation or advance American interests in the region. I am pleased to see other opportunities are being presented that could address this situation. I will continue to monitor these developments.

Meanwhile, Congressman Dan Maffei told Syracuse.com that he was still skeptical that a strike in Syria would accomplish the objectives laid out by President Obama.


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