WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) released the following statement regarding President Obama’s remarks on Syria:
“I commend President Obama for listening to bi-partisan calls for him to seek congressional authority before any possible use of force against Syria. Given that the President did not request an emergency session of Congress, that must mean that he agrees there is no imminent threat requiring the Commander in Chief to act without consulting the representatives of the American people.
“I remain concerned that the mission proposed by the President is not in furtherance the vital national security interests of the United States. To date I have heard a great deal from the administration about punishing Bashir al-Assad for violating an ‘international norm’ through the use of chemical weapons, and that this is why we must act against him. Abstract notions about international norms should never displace U.S. sovereignty to act, or refuse to act, for our national security.
“Assad’s murderous actions have claimed the lives of more than a hundred thousand of his own people, which is a humanitarian tragedy. But our chief strategic concern should not be international norms; it should be preventing the chemical weapons from falling into the hands of al Qaeda or other terrorists who might use them against us and our allies.
“It is now incumbent upon President Obama to make his case and persuade Congress that his plan is necessary, and the best course to preserve our security and protect our liberties. Like the President, I welcome this debate and I agree this is an issue of the highest seriousness that transcends partisan politics.”