Hastings’ Statement on U.S. Airstrikes in Syria
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) released the following statement after American forces launched airstrikes against a Syrian government-controlled airfield, in response to the horrific chemical weapon attack that took place earlier this week:
“Hundreds of thousands of innocent Syrians have been killed and millions more displaced over the last few years. This week’s chemical weapon attack perpetrated by the Assad regime is a horrific continuation of this violence and a crime against humanity.
“It is a sad state of affairs for this nation that Congress has continued to sit idly by while the Executive Branch further engages our military in conflicts overseas without Congressional authorization. This dereliction is no fault of President Donald John Trump’s, but it does our entire nation a disservice. For too long, Congress has not had the opportunity to weigh in on decisions to commit American troops to conflicts abroad. This cannot continue.
“If the President intends to further involve American armed forces in this conflict, then Congress has the constitutional authority and responsibility to lead that conversation. A Twitter-based foreign policy will not suffice. I strongly urge President Trump to present a clear and coherent strategy for what he plans to accomplish and what he envisions are the next steps. Congress, for its part, must bring forward a new Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) detailing the confines of future action. I call on the Speaker to bring the House of Representatives back into session without delay to address such a measure.”
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings serves as Senior Member of the House Rules Committee, Ranking Democratic Member of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, and Co-Chairman of the Florida Delegation.