WASHINGTON — Oklahoma lawmakers continued to voice opposition Wednesday to U.S. military action in Syria, as Rep. Frank Lucas joined colleagues in the delegation who don't want to authorize force.
Some members are leaving open a tiny crack in the door while making it clear that it would be tough to convince them to support the authorization sought by President Barack Obama.
“I have a real difficult time imagining how I could vote on a resolution allowing the president to make war in Syria,” Lucas, R-Cheyenne, said at a town hall meeting in Enid, according to the Enid News and Eagle. “If you think we need to be involved in Syria, you're going to have to lecture me pretty hard.”
After attending a closed-door briefing of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Jim Inhofe, of Tulsa, reiterated his opposition.
Inhofe, the top Republican on the committee, said the president “must first explain our objectives and end state in Syria, present a long-term strategy for the region and the means to fund it, as well as clarify the risks associated with military intervention.
“Despite several years of bloodshed, we're just now seeing a last-minute rush by the White House to gain the support of Congress and the American people. Until the president comes forward with answers to these questions, no one should vote to authorize an act of war on Syria.”
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a resolution by a vote of 10-7, and the full Senate is expected to begin debate next week.
At a town hall meeting in Bethany on Tuesday night, Rep. James Lankford, R-Oklahoma City, told the audience that “U.S. military involvement in Syria's civil war is not in our national interest.
“I will review the classified materials in Washington, D.C., but from what I have heard to date, the proposal on the table does not achieve our larger goal in the Middle East of stability or a reduction of chemical weapon threats.”
Lankford said Wednesday that the response from his constituents was overwhelmingly against U.S. military action.
Other reactions from delegation
• Sen. Tom Coburn, R-
• Reps. Tom Cole, R-
• Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-