Tags: Steve Scalise | ISIS | airstrikes | congress

Rep. Scalise: Congress Ready for More Action on ISIS

By    |   Wednesday, 08 Oct 2014 01:15 PM

Many members of Congress want to see a "broader plan" from President Barack Obama on how he intends to defeat the Islamic State (ISIS or ISIL), Rep. Steve Scalise told MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

Scalise said Congress debated and approved the legislation Obama requested that included limited airstrikes and developing a coalition of nations to fight the Islamic State.

Congress is currently on a break prior to the fall midterm elections, and Scalise said lawmakers would return "tomorrow" if the president needed further authorization to expand U.S. involvement.

"A lot of us have asked for is a broader plan from the president. Not just air bombing," the Louisiana Republican said Wednesday. "What is the president going to do if he says he wants to eliminate ISIL, which is what we want? What is his plan to do that? He hasn't laid that plan out. Ultimately, Barack Obama is the commander-in-chief."

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While approving the use of airstrikes in Iraq and Syria, Obama has continued to maintain he would not allow U.S. ground troops in Iraq and Syria to fight the Islamic State. Scalise said Obama needed to be "more aggressive at saying what he's willing to do, because one of the things the president said is what he won't do."

"I think [U.S. ground troops] should be an option the president keeps as an option on the table. Don't necessarily put it on the table. But, don't take it off the table," he said.

One of the "bigger, broader questions" about the fight against the Islamic State was whether or not Obama wanted Congress to "revisit the existing Authorization for Use of Military Force that goes back to 2002," Scalise said.

"Does the president have his own fingerprints he wants to put on it? What is his vision of what the Authorization for Use of Military Force should be? Congress would be willing to debate it if the president laid it out," he said.

Obama needed to put together the coalition of nations Congress authorized in the battle against the Islamic State, Scalise said, adding lawmakers also approved the United States to accept funds and troops from other nations.

Though coalition nations may have "other agendas," Scalise said it was important the United States not get "in the middle of all these other fights," but remain "focused on what's important to protecting America's national security."


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Many members of Congress want to see a "broader plan" from President Obama on how he intends to defeat the Islamic State, says GOP Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana.
Steve Scalise, ISIS, airstrikes, congress
399
2014-15-08
Wednesday, 08 Oct 2014 01:15 PM
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