Support for military force in Syria still mixed

WASHINGTON (AP) - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has formally introduced the resolution giving President Barack Obama the authority to use military force against Syria.

Reid filed the measure on Friday during a brief Senate session.

Lawmakers return from their five-week recess on Monday and will begin to debate the resolution. A vote to move ahead on the resolution is expected on Wednesday.

The Senate is deeply divided over whether to approve military strikes in response to chemical weapons attacks in Syria.

Republicans and Democrats have expressed opposition to the measure, which the Senate Foreign Relations Committee narrowly approved on a 10-7 vote on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner says President Barack Obama is going to have to make a convincing case when he speaks to the public Tuesday night to urge congressional approval of a military strike on Syria.

Surveys have shown a significant number of House Republicans and Democrats opposed to military action or leaning against it -- but officials in the leadership say it's premature to say the resolution can't be approved.

At this stage, just a third of the House and Senate members have been given classified briefings.

At a news conference following the G20 summit in Russia, Obama acknowledged deep divisions at home and abroad over what action to take in response to Syria's use of chemical weapons.

Ten of the G20 members joined the U.S. in accusing the Syrian government of carrying out a chemical attack on civilians last month. They called for a strong international response but stopped short of endorsing military action.


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