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Rep. Chris Van Hollen: Evidence of Syria attack convincing, but Congress is divided

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Rep. Chris Van Hollen said Monday that a majority of Congress finds footage of a chemical attack on Syrian civilians to be convincing, but lawmakers remain divided over how to respond.

Mr. Van Hollen, a Maryland Democrat who is a key party voice on foreign affairs in the House, said there is fear of “mission creep” in the region that would go beyond punitive action against Syrian President Bashar Assad, whom the White House has pinpointed as responsible for an Aug. 21 sarin gas attack near Damascus that killed more than 1,400 Syrians.


SEE RELATED: Weasel words? Assad says there is ‘no evidence’ he used chemical weapons


“But we do need to act in response to this outrageous mass gassing of civilians,” Mr. Van Hollen told MSNBC’s “Morning Rundown.”

The congressman declined to predict how the issue will play out in Congress in the coming days, but he said the resolution would start in the Senate and likely be “very narrow” in scope.

Mr. Van Hollen stopped short of saying the resolution would be pulled from the House floor if the votes are not there to pass it.

But he hinted, “I would not want to see a defeat on this particular issue.”

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