U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins today called on President Barack Obama to refrain from taking military action in Syria.
"While the recent chemical attack on Syrian citizens is an atrocious crime, it is still unclear who is on the other side of this conflict," said Jenkins, a Republican who represents the 2nd District, which includes Lawrence and Douglas County.
Jenkins said she had signed a letter, along with 97 other House Republicans and 18 House Democrats, urging Obama to seek congressional authorization for military action against Syria.
The Obama administration is said to be studying options for a military strike against the Syrian regime following reports earlier in the week that government forces loyal to President Bashar Assad used chemical weapons against civilians.
"As there is no immediate threat to our homeland, President Obama owes the American people the opportunity to have their voices heard as he brings this issue before Congress and seeks its approval," Jenkins said in a statement released today.
"While I stand opposed to this military action, many will favor intervention, but a public debate must be had," Jenkins said.
Jenkins was in Lawrence and Ottawa today meeting constituents while Congress is in recess, but the subject of U.S. military action in Syria did not come up during those meetings.
On Tuesday, Republican U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas told the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce that he believes military action in Syria is inevitable. Although Roberts did not say definitively whether he would support or oppose such a move, he also urged Obama to seek congressional approval before taking any action.