Senate Committee Approves Syrian Strike, 10-7, As John McCain Flips His Vote

McCrusty has changed his mind again.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a resolution Wednesday granting President Obama limited authority to launch a military strike on Syria in response to its reported use of chemical weapons against civilians.

Acting hours after Obama, during a visit to Sweden, said the credibility of Congress and the international community was also at stake, the committee voted 10 to 7, with one member voting “present,” to approve using force against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The resolution now goes to the full Senate. The House is separately considering a similar resolution.

But the hearing to mark up the resolution was delayed for more than two hours amid disagreements among senators over its wording. Among those initially opposed to the Senate committee’s draft was Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), a leading GOP voice on national security issues, who wanted broader U.S. action against Syria, the Associated Press reported.

The Senate committee’s version, released late Tuesday by a bipartisan group of senators, would permit up to 90 days of military action against the Syrian government and bar the deployment of U.S. combat troops in Syria, while allowing a small rescue mission in the event of an emergency. The White House also would be required within 30 days of enactment of the resolution to send lawmakers a plan for a diplomatic solution to end the violence in Syria.

Here's the breakdown of the vote:

Who voted yes?: Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) (by proxy — was absent due to the Jewish holiday), Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Christopher Coons (D-Del.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.). Ranking member Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Sens. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.).

Who voted no?: Sens. Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Christopher Murphy (D-Conn.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.)

Who voted present?: Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.).

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