Sep 10 2013

Shelby to Vote NO on Syria Strike Sen. Richard Shelby: Obama's Syria plan 'weak and vague,' will vote against it

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Tuscaloosa, emerged from a closed-door briefing with President Barack Obama today and said he will "firmly oppose" the resolution brought before the Senate calling for the use of American military force in Syria’s civil war.

"I have heard the President’s argument. It is weak and vague, in my judgment," Shelby said today.

Shelby was among a group of Republican senators who met with Obama for a two-hour lunch to discuss the situation in Syria. U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., also participated in the briefing, according to his office.

Shelby said Obama "has failed to articulate a clear American interest in this conflict."

"He has also failed to clearly explain what he intends to achieve and how he intends to achieve it. And he has failed to assure us that an attack would not further destabilize an already unstable part of the world," Shelby said.

“I will vote against President Obama’s plan because it appears that he does not really have one.”

Shelby also expressed skepticism about a Russian proposal to negotiate the removal of Syria's chemical weapons.

“My first impression is that Vladimir Putin probably decides to involve himself when it benefits Vladimir Putin. But it’s mainly all talk right now. We’ll see whether there’s any meaningful, verifiable substance to it. I’m guarded.”