Senate Democrats Drafting New Language For Authorization Of Military Force In Syria: Report

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., questions top Obama administration officials about the National Sec
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., questions top Obama administration officials about the National Security Agency's surveillance programs for the first time since the House narrowly rejected a proposal last week to effectively shut down the NSA's secret collection of hundreds of millions of Americans' phone records, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 31, 2013. After NSA systems analyst Edward Snowden leaked documents revealing the NSA's monitoring of American's telephone records, Leahy introduced legislation that would increase congressional oversight of the program. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said Sunday that Democratic aides in the Senate are drafting new language for an authorization of military force in Syria, Politico reports.

Speaking after some members of Congress returned early from recess to attend closed-door briefings on the situation in Syria, Leahy said the draft legislation offered by President Barack Obama on Saturday was too broad.

“I know it’s going to be amended in the Senate,” Leahy said, according to Politico.

On Saturday, Obama submitted to Congress a draft resolution authorizing the use of military force in response to Syrian President Bashar Assad's suspected use of chemical weapons on innocent civilians. The measure would allow the president to use force in a “necessary and appropriate” way.

"While I believe I have the authority to carry out this military action without specific congressional authorization, I know that the country will be stronger if we take this course, and our actions will be even more effective," Obama said during a Saturday statement.

According to the Washington Post, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) also expressed hesitation over the draft's language.

“I think the biggest question I heard is that the president’s request is open-ended,” Roberts said. “That has to be rectified, and they simply said in answer to that that they would work with the Congress and try to come back with a more prescribed resolution. But I’m not too sure that the people who answered that are the people that have that decision to make.”

According to Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.), about 100 to 150 lawmakers attended the classified briefing.

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