Sunday, September 8, 2013

 

Obama Losing The War At Home

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gty missouri Emanuel Cleaver thg 130906 16x9 608 Obama Losing The War At Home
Bill Clark
NOTABLES
  • ‘IT DOESN’T MATTER WHO SLEEPS IN THE WHITE HOUSE’: Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, a Missouri Democrat who has been deeply skeptical of a military strike against Syria, said he would listen to his constituents before making a decision. And at a town meeting Thursday night in Kansas City, he got an earful, ABC’s JEFF ZELENY reports. For two hours Cleaver stood at the front of a crowded room and listened to one person after another urge him to oppose military action. He heard from the liberal left and the Tea Party right — all with the same message, which one man summed up succinctly: “My short answer to this is not no, but hell no.” So what will Cleaver do? As of now, he’s one of many House Democrats poised to vote no. Has anything in the administration’s argument been persuasive? “No,” he told ABC News after the meeting. “I listened to an official from the administration yesterday and while he was certainly powerful in his statements about why we should go alone, in terms of striking targets in Syria, I don’t think he said anything compelling.” When it comes to Syria, Cleaver ultimately said he has to treat President Obama like he would President Bush: “It doesn’t matter who sleeps in the White House,” he said.
  • JEERS AND JEERS: Meanwhile in Arizona, Sen. John McCain’s town hall yesterday in Tucson was interrupted by jeers and anti-war chants, ABC’s RICK KLEIN notes. According to a dispatch from the Arizona Republic, police removed some disruptors, and a veteran walked out in the middle of a McCain answer when he didn’t like the case he was making on Syria: http://bit.ly/19nu7ES Another data point is the anecdotal evidence of voters making their views known through congressional offices. Several are reporting opposition to the war running at 99 percent or more. The Washington Post has rounded up some Tweets: http://wapo.st/17DASDr Voters, it appears, are speaking out — and not in the direction that President Obama needs them to be. If he plans on engaging the public on his effort to lobby Congress, he gave the other side (both the anti-war left and the anti-Obama right) a week’s head start.
  • ADDRESS TO THE NATION COULD COME SOON: President Obama is considering a high-profile address to the nation on the need for military intervention in Syria — a speech that could come as early as this weekend — according to top lawmakers and administration officials, ABC’s DEVIN DWYER reports. Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said today there is no speech planned at this point, but that Obama is looking at “multiple opportunities” to make the case directly to Congress and the American people. Earlier this week, Secretary of State John Kerry told the House Foreign Affairs Committee that he has “no doubt” the president will make a speech from the Oval Office in the coming days. Obama is expected to return to Washington from Russia and the G-20 summit late tonight.  His weekend schedule has not been announced. http://abcn.ws/18GaHZN
  • SENATE TIMING: The first test vote on whether the president can use military force against Syria could come early next week in the Senate, according to ABC’s ARLETTE SAENZ. In a quick pro forma session at noon today, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will place the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s resolution on the calendar. This allows for preliminary debate of the resolution to begin on Monday or Tuesday and sets up the first vote on cloture for as early as Wednesday. Reid indicated earlier this week that he hopes to have the resolution voted on by the end of next week.

THIS WEEK ON ‘THIS WEEK’: As Washington debates potential military action against Syria, we have full analysis and the latest details of where the vote in Congress stands, and what it will take for the Obama administration to win support for a Syria strike. This Sunday, George Stephanopoulos goes one-on-one with two key players in the debate – White House chief of staff Denis McDonough, and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, a vocal critic of U.S.  involvement in Syria. And our powerhouse roundtable tackles the debate over military action against Syria, with Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., Democratic strategist Donna Brazile, co-founder of the Foreign Policy Initiative Dan Senor, The Nation’s Katrina vanden Heuvel, and Fox News anchor Greta Van Susteren. Check the “This Week” page for full guest listings. Be sure to use #ThisWeek when you tweet about the program. Tune in Sunday: http://abcnews.go.com/thisweek
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