More than 100 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, including four representatives from Minnesota, have signed a letter sent today to President Barack Obama asking him to seek congressional approval before launching military actions in Syria.
The Washington Post reports the letter is signed by Democratic U.S. Reps. Tim Walz, Rick Nolan and Collin Peterson and Republican Michele Bachmann,.
An attack on Syria by the United States appears imminent following the apparent use of chemical weapons by Bashar al-Assad’s government last week.
The letter written by Rep. Scott Rigell (R-Va.) argues that military action without congressional approval would violate the separation of powers outlined in the Constitution.
“We strongly urge you to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering the use of U.S. military force in Syria. Your responsibility to do so is prescribed in the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973.”
The letter points back to Obama’s decision not to consult Congress about military action in Libya, arguing that it was unconstitutional.
“If you deem that military action in Syria is necessary, Congress can reconvene at your request. We stand ready to come back into session, consider the facts before us, and share the burden of decisions made regarding U.S. involvement in the quickly escalating Syrian conflict.”
The Washington Post reports at least 98 Republicans and 18 Democrats have signed the letter.