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Seth McLaughlin

Seth McLaughlin, a reporter on the Politics Desk, can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @SethMcLaughlin1

Articles by Seth McLaughlin


Tea party-linked lawmakers shun strike on Syria

Tea party-aligned lawmakers are standing up in almost universal opposition to President Obama's push for military action against Syria — distancing them from the foreign interventionism that defined the George W. Bush-era and providing some insight into how the tea party movement views the role of the military and America's role in the world. Published September 10, 2013

** FILE ** Rep. Steve Israel, New York Democrat. (Associated Press)

Rep. Steve Israel: 2014 election will not be a referendum on Syria

The chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee said Tuesday that it is too early to tell whether his party can take over the House in the 2014 election but that he is confident the issue of Syria will not stand in its way. Published September 10, 2013

**FILE** U.S. United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power speaks about Syria on Sept. 6, 2013, at the Center for American Progress in Washington. (Associated Press)

U.N. envoy: U.S. has 'exhausted the alternatives' to Syria strike

Seeking to rally support for military action against Syria, President Obama's new ambassador to the U.N. said Friday that the administration has "exhausted the alternatives" and that Americans should agree that there are "lines in this world that should not be crossed and limits on murderous behavior that must be enforced." Published September 6, 2013

** FILE ** In this citizen journalism image provided by the United media office of Arbeen which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, U.N. investigation team with blue helmets, walk with Syrian rebels in Damascus countryside of Zamalka, Syria, Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/United media office of Arbeen)

Syrian rebel slams Putin over attack claim

A leader of the Free Syrian Army said Friday that Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to deceive the international community into thinking it was someone other than the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad who launched a chemical weapons attack that killed more than a thousand people last month. Published September 6, 2013

** FILE ** Rep. Bob Goodlatte, Virginia Republican, is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. (Associated Press)

House Judiciary Committee chair skeptical of Syria strike

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee said he is skeptical of using force against Syria, but said he is withholding judgment until President Obama makes his case and he sees the final details of the congressional resolution that he will vote on. Published September 6, 2013

Rep. Jeff Duncan, South Carolina Republican (Associated Press)

Shadow of Benghazi clouds Obama's Syria push on Capitol Hill

Lingering frustration over the way President Obama handled the attacks in Libya that led to death of a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans has colored the debate over whether to launch military strikes against Syrian President Bashar Assad. Published September 5, 2013

** FILE ** Former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum. (Associated Press)

Ex-Sen. Rick Santorum opposes U.S. strike in Syria

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, the runner-up in the 2012 GOP presidential race, said Thursday that Congress should oppose President Obama's push for military strikes against Syrian President Bashar Assad. Published September 5, 2013

**FILE** In this photo taken Dec. 7, 2010, former Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates pins Combat Infantry badges on soldiers at Forward Operating Base Connolly in Kunar Province, Afghanistan. (Associated Press)

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates backs Obama's push for Syria strikes

Robert M. Gates, a Republican who served as secretary of defense under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, is calling on lawmakers on Capitol Hill to back the Obama administration's plan to launch a military strike against the Assad regime, Politico reported. Published September 5, 2013

Matt Bevin

McConnell's silence on Syria creates an opening for Bevin

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has remained silent on whether he supports President Obama's calls for military strikes against Syria, saying only that he wants more information as he tries to calibrate his views with those of his colleagues in Washington and voters back home in Kentucky. Published September 4, 2013

GOP's libertarian wing sees opportunity to push for less intervention

The debate over whether the U.S. should launch airstrikes against Syria is testing the willingness of rank-and-file Republicans to get involved in another military conflict and giving the party's libertarian wing a chance to push the party toward adopting a less interventionist approach to foreign policy. Published September 3, 2013

Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint is trying to wield conservative power outside the Senate. (Associated Press)

Jim DeMint still able to pull some weight among Senate Republicans

When he was in the Senate, Jim DeMint wasn't shy about trying to recruit conservatives he thought would buck the Republican Party establishment and gum up the collegial workings of the legislative process. Now on the outside, running the Heritage Foundation, the former senator from South Carolina may have even more levers to pull. Published September 2, 2013

**FILE** Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican (Associated Press)

Sen. Rand Paul: Obama interested in 'saving face' on Syria

Sen. Rand Paul said Friday that President Obama appears to be interested in "saving face" when it comes to his pending decision on whether to approve U.S.-led military strikes against the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Published August 30, 2013

** FILE ** Former President George W. Bush turns and waves as he follows President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama as they leave after the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center, Thursday, April 25, 2013, in Dallas. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

The Decider says Obama has a 'tough choice' on Syria

Former President George W. Bush said that President Obama has a "tough choice" to make when it comes to whether to launch a military strike against the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad, who the administration has concluded used chemical weapons against citizens. Published August 30, 2013

**FILE** Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. (AP Photo)

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence calls Sen. Jeff Flake a 'strong conservative'

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence said Friday that Sen. Jeff Flake is a "strong conservative," putting him at odds with some voices in the GOP who have hammered the Arizona Republican's reluctance to embrace a government shutdown in order to stop funding for Obamacare. Published August 30, 2013

President Barack Obama holds a National Security Council meeting in the Situation Room of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Obama may go solo with Syria strike; U.S., British lawmakers voice opposition

President Obama and his top aides tried to rally support Thursday for retaliatory strikes in Syria, saying they remain convinced that the Assad regime used chemical weapons, but hopes for an international coalition took a major hit when the British Parliament voted against military action. Published August 29, 2013

**FILE** Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, speaks during the family leadership summit in Ames, Iowa, on Aug. 10, 2013. (Associated Press)

Sen. Ted Cruz: Congress must have say on Syria before Obama acts

Sen. Ted Cruz joined the growing chorus of lawmakers who are calling on President Obama to follow the Constitution and to call Congress back to Washington in order to debate the nation's response before he responds to the suspected chemical attacks on citizens in Syria. Published August 29, 2013

In this image taken from video, Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron, center, speaks during a debate on Syria, in Britain's parliament, London, Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013. (AP Photo / PA)

U.K. PM Cameron loses Syria war vote

The British House of Commons rejected a proposal from British Prime Minister David Cameron that would have paved the way for British military action against Syria — effectively ending the nation's chances of getting involved in a US-led strike against President Bashar Assad's regime. Published August 29, 2013