Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker said Thursday that President Donald Trump should "certainly come to Congress" before taking any military action against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad after his latest chemical attack.
"I think something is appropriate now," the Tennessee Republican told Jake Tapper on CNN. "Obviously, it would be good to get the international community with us — or many members, other allies — with us in this.
"It needs to be proportional.
"The American people are not interested in some ground war or something that's long-term, but I think an appropriate response is necessary," he said.
Trump strongly suggested to reporters on Air Force One that Assad would have to leave power after late Monday's chemical attack that killed more than 80 people.
"I think what happened in Syria is a disgrace to humanity," Trump said en route to a summit meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at his Florida resort.
Asked if Assad should remain in power, he said "he's there — and I guess he's running things, so something should happen."
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Corker said pressure also must be put on Russia to force President Vladimir Putin to withdraw all support for Assad.
"Russia wants to be on the world stage," he told Tapper. "They should show they're worthy of being on the world stage by withdrawing all support for Assad.
"That's a whole other step that needs to be taken — and I would hope the president and other civilized countries would be encouraging Putin to do the same."
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