Here we are at Day 7 of our whip effort. This is where we stand:
Syria War Vote Count Sun Sept 8
David Swanson has written a superb, must-read post on Syria:
We’ve also been hearing that President Obama has no choice. He’s painted himself into a corner. War simply must happen now, for better or worse. This is nonsense, of course. If Kennedy could back off from a nuclear pissing match with Khrushchev, then surely Obama can accede to the opinion of the United States and the world on the matter of Syria. Had Kennedy prioritized stupid machismo, we wouldn’t admire him more. We wouldn’t do anything at all. We’d all be dead or never born. Wars, despite a common lie, are not inevitable.
Read it, bookmark it, tweet it, post it on Facebook and Reddit, and send it to your friends. The clearest and most distilled presentation of arguments against military action in Syria I’ve seen.
By popular demand we’re starting a Senate whip count page, which should be up later in the day. For now if you see information on where members of Congress stand on the question of Syria, please leave them in the comments.
I’ll be posting updates here throughout the day, so check back here for the latest news on Syria.
Update 12:55 pm: On CNN’s State of the Union, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon asked for a meeting with the President before any Congressional authorization vote on Syria. He echoes a few Republican House members, and at least Inhoffe in the Senate, in saying we can’t subject the military to the sequester and ask them to go to war at the same time.
If the White House agrees to remove the military from the sequester they may pick up a few Republican votes, but they risk alienating Democrats in the deal.
Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) moves from lean yea to lean nay, per her appearance on Meet the Press this morning.
Update 2:14 PM: Yer gonna hate me but I think I’m going to put my Senate documentation here in a bit. Nothing will surprise anyone, but I want to continue our commitment to showing our work so people can verify our totals.
From The Hill: “Nearly a dozen GOP senators have been invited by Vice President Biden to attend a dinner Sunday at the Naval Observatory in Washington to discuss Syria, according to multiple news reports.”
Update 3:53 PM: Per David Swanson, on Lila Garrett’s radio show to be aired on Monday, Henry Waxman says he will vote “no.”
1) Everyone running in 2014 who is not currently committed votes no (most have already declared that way)
Those are awfully charitable assumptions. No wonder Biden is having Republicans to dinner tonight.
Update 4:40 PM: UN weapons inspector David Kay says that based on the videos he’s seen, the technology needed to make such a strike would have had to come from a government, and not a defector.
Update 5:13 PM: McCain is just incoherent. Now he’s saying nobody wants boots on the ground and if Obama does that he will be impeached. Wasn’t he just threatening to withhold his vote unless Obama committed to regime change? Who was supposed to do that? Magic pixies?
Update 6:05 PM: James McGovern (D-MA) goes from lean nay to firm nay on Syria, per his comments on CNN today. Says the President shoulno withdraw his request.
Probably should have done it before, but I’m moving Janice Hahn (D-CA) from lean nay to firm nay, per her comments on CNN today.
Update 6:39 PM: In response to John Kerry’s continuing assertions that there is “growing support” for military action in Syria, I thought I’d create a chart of how many in the House of Representatives were coming out with statements on how they planned to vote on Syria.
Lean yes + firm yes is in blue, lean nay + firm nay is in red:
The ratio of nay to yea votes has gone from 2:1 on 9/2 to nearly 4:1 today.
I realize Kerry is talking about the willingness of other countries to join a military effort, but the larger point remains: he’s got huge problems on the domestic front that is growing exponentially.