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POLITICS: PennAve

John Boehner contradicts White House, says there's little or no consultation on Syria

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There has been no meaningful consultation with the White House over Syria, House Speaker John Boehner’s office said on Tuesday.

With likely military action looming, Boehner on Monday night received a brief call from the White House that included little to no detail about how the United States will react to Syria’s use of chemical weapons on its own citizens.

Instead, the White House told Boehner they’d be in touch later.

“Consultation requires a meaningful discussion of the options being considered,” a House GOP leadership aide said. “That hasn’t happened. We continue to believe that before any action is taken there must be meaningful consultation with members of Congress, as well as clearly-defined strategy for achieving our national security objectives.”

Department of Defense officials briefed House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Calif., on Monday night, a committee aide told the Examiner.

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, D-Mich., heard from the administration on Syria Tuesday morning.

“The administration is proceeding cautiously, consulting with our allies and other countries in the region to respond to the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons against the Syrian people,” Levin said in a statement. “The president is considering a broad range of options that have been presented by our military leaders.”

McKeon said in a statement that President Obama needs to consult Congress about how the United States will respond

“Drawing red lines before you know what you are willing to back them up is folly, but now that American credibility is on the line, the President cannot fail to act decisively,” he said.

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Susan Ferrechio

Chief Congressional Correspondent
The Washington Examiner