Tags: benghazi | syria | obama | tea | party

Benghazi Attack Haunts Obama's Call for Strike on Syria

Sunday, 08 Sep 2013 08:18 AM

By Audrey Hudson

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Tea party Republicans and veterans of the military's special forces say the Benghazi terrorist attack will come back to haunt President Barack Obama this week and damage his efforts to make the case for attacking Syria.

When Obama addresses the nation Tuesday night to justify the strike -- just hours before the one year anniversary of the attack on the American diplomatic mission -- members of Special Forces Speaks will be lobbying Republicans to vote "no."

Instead, the group wants Congress to resist any intervention in Syria until the events in Benghazi are fully investigated and revealed to the public, the Hill reports.

The newspaper's polling shows those sentiments are already shared by tea party Republicans, 100 of which are already leaning "no," as opposed to 31 leaning towards a "yes" vote.

Republican Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina asked Secretary of State John Kerry during a House hearing last week why the president did not call for military action in April after the first reports that chemical weapons were being used.

"Was it delayed to divert attention today from the Benghazi, IRS, NSA scandals, the failure of Obamacare enforcement, the tragedy of the White House-drafted sequestration, or the upcoming debt limit vote?" Wilson asked.

During another exchange with Kerry, Republican Rep. Jeff Duncan of South Carolina said he would not discuss U.S. involvement in Syria's civil war without also talking about Benghazi.

"The administration has a serious credibility issue with the American people due to the unanswered questions surrounding the terrorist attack in Benghazi almost a year ago," Duncan said.

"The American people deserve answers about Benghazi before we move forward with military involvement in Syria's civil war," Duncan said.

Kerry criticized the Republicans and said their concerns should remain focused on the gas attacks.

"We don't deserve to drag this into yet another Benghazi discussion when the real issue here is whether or not the Congress is going to stand up for international norms," Kerry said

However, Republican Rep. Ron DeSantis of Florida disagreed: "The assassination of a diplomat breaches norms that were recognized probably far longer than norms against use of sarin gas. And yet the U.S. has not acted to avenge the death of the four Americans, including our ambassador, who were massacred in Benghazi."

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