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On Syria, Obama Faces Questions On Role Of Congress

Chip Somodevilla, Getty Images

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama faces a familiar question as he contemplates airstrikes in Syria: Should Congress have a say in his decision?

Just last summer Obama was barreling toward strikes in Syria when he abruptly announced that he first wanted approval from congressional lawmakers. But Congress balked at Obama’s request, and the strikes were eventually scrapped.

This time around, the White House is suggesting it may not be necessary to get a sign-off from Congress.

While cautioning that Obama has made no final decisions, officials say there is a difference between last year’s effort to attack Syria’s government in retaliation for chemical weapons use and a bombing campaign against Islamic State militants threatening Americans in the region.

Earlier this month, Obama authorized U.S. airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq.

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