President Barack Obama must first get approval from Congress before launching a military strike against Syria, Rep. Scott Garrett said Friday.
“The United States Congress has the sole authority to send the American military into combat—not the United Nations or any other international institutions,” Garrett, a conservative Republican, said in a statement. “Engaging our military in Syria without prior congressional authorization—when no direct threat to the United States exists—would violate the separation of powers clearly outlined by the Constitution.”
“If President Obama thinks it is in the best interest of the United States to intervene militarily in Syria, he must come to Congress and seek authorization,” Garrett added.
Speaking at the White House Friday afternoon, Obama said he was considering a "limited, narrow act" in response to a chemical weapons attack that U.S. officials say was carried out by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government against its own people.
A U.S. intelligence report pointed to a “high confidence” that Assad’s forces used chemical weapons in an Aug. 21 attack outside Damascus. More than 1,400 people were killed, including 426 children, a preliminary assessment said.Obama said he has not made a final decision on how to respond and would not take a “boots on the ground approach,” Politico.com reported.