September 3, 2013
U.S. Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC) issued the following statement in advance of the upcoming House vote on a resolution authorizing military action against Syria:
“While I do not think that President Obama was constitutionally required to obtain congressional approval prior to taking military action against Syria, I appreciate the President asking Congress to vote on a resolution. I am looking forward to hearing the details of the resolution and learning more concerning the use of chemical weapons against the Syrian people.
“As of right now, I am leaning towards voting against the use of any American military assets against Syria for several reasons. First, the costs of even a limited action will be enormous, and we cannot afford it. In the past, even limited military actions have had a way of spinning out of control, costing American taxpayers billions of dollars that we simply do not have.
“Second, it appears that if we pursue this course, we will be going it alone. Our allies Great Britain, France and Germany will sit on the sidelines, and I do not see any assistance forthcoming from our friends in the Middle East, Turkey, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
“Third, it appears we will be a day late and dollar short in taking any meaningful action against the Assad regime. If this action was so urgent, why has something not been done already. These months of dithering have given Assad the time needed to be prepared for any would-be American military action.
“I agree that the use of chemical weapons against the Syrian people is a heinous act of cowardice. But some 100,000 people have been killed in the Syrian civil war, and we have not acted. We cannot afford to be the world’s police force.
“Unless I learn something that changes my mind during the resolution debate, I plan to vote against the measure. From what I have heard so far from constituents in the Sixth District, they overwhelmingly agree that we should not be using military force against Syria.”