On Wednesday, the two Latino senators who sit on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee found themselves at odds with each other. Senator Robert Menendez (D-New Jersey) voted for the resolution authorizing action against Syria, while Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) voted against the resolution.
Rubio’s vote against the resolution authorizing military action against Syria represents a departure from his earlier rhetoric. According to a report in Politico:
“But Rubio was an early advocate of arming the Syrian rebels; he backed the U.S. mission in Libya; and he’s been an unabashed supporter of providing foreign aid including to turmoil-ridden Egypt. And over the last two years, Rubio has advocated a larger U.S. presence in the region, pushing for everything from humanitarian aid to imposing tougher sanctions on the Syrian central bank to arming the rebels fighting the Assad regime.
But over the last several months, Rubio has backed away from that position, raising concerns that the Obama administration has waited too long — and now is seeking a meek response that will only further destabilize the region. In the hearing, he said he was “skeptical” of Obama’s approach for limited airstrikes — and he argued that a more aggressive effort seeking regime change would bring forward its own problems.”
On Tuesday, Senator Menendez said that the “horror” of Syria’s chemical weapons attack cannot be ignored. He suggested that his colleagues put aside their ideological differences and worries about the polls to act.
Meanwhile in the House of Representatives, it looks like there may be trouble getting a resolution passed at all as a large group of law makers appear set to vote no.