Political Insiders Poll

If Congress Doesn’t Approve Use of Force in Syria, Should Obama Go Ahead With It Anyway?

None

Michael Catalini Alex Roarty and Peter Bell
See more stories about...
Michael Catalini Alex Roarty and Peter Bell
Sept. 12, 2013, 4 p.m.

If Con­gress does not ap­prove a res­ol­u­tion to use force in Syr­ia, should the pres­id­ent go ahead without law­makers’ ap­prov­al?

DEMO­CRATS (94 VOTES)

Yes: 20%
No: 80%

Yes

“It’s the only way he avoids be­ing totally feck­less.”

“If Con­gress does noth­ing and tries to call it lead­er­ship, POTUS should leave all op­tions open to pro­tect U.S. val­ues and in­terests abroad.”

“He has no good op­tions, but he must act uni­lat­er­ally if the Syr­i­an chem­ic­al weapons can’t be taken away from As­sad.”

“Yes. He should have done it Aug. 22.”

“It is the right thing to do.”

No

“The Rus­si­an deal could save Obama from a vote, and that is his best hope to get out of this mess.”

“You can’t ask Con­gress for au­thor­iz­a­tion and then dis­reg­ard their vote.”

“If Con­gress turns the pres­id­ent down, the le­gis­lat­ive branch is just do­ing its job, and the only way for Pres­id­ent Obama to do his is to stand down.”

“He could, but he shouldn’t. He can’t ask Con­gress for per­mis­sion he didn’t even need and then just ig­nore it.”

“Once he has asked for ap­prov­al, he is ac­know­ledging leg­ally he needs it.”

“It is not clear that he leg­ally could do it, but it is clear that he can­not polit­ic­ally do it.”

“Why the hell do you ask for a vote if you can’t win it? If he loses, for­get it.”

“Can’t ask for per­mis­sion first, then for for­give­ness.”

“It would be polit­ic­al sui­cide.”

“He turned his fate over to them. He needs to live with it.”

If Con­gress does not ap­prove a res­ol­u­tion to use force in Syr­ia, should the pres­id­ent go ahead without law­makers’ ap­prov­al?

RE­PUB­LIC­ANS (104 VOTES)

Yes: 26%
No: 74%

Yes

“Polit­ic­ally, yes. This thing has been so am­a­teur­ishly handled his only sav­ing play is to not weak­en pres­id­en­tial power for his suc­cessors.”

“The in­sti­tu­tion of the pres­id­ency de­mands he take some ac­tion at this point.”

“Yes, but for a dif­fer­ent reas­on than it’s the right thing to do. Obama tried to juke Syr­ia on the in­ter­na­tion­al court and sprained his ankle. Now he needs SOMEONE to help him up.”

“He should have nev­er asked.”

“Polit­ics aside, he set a line and OUR cred­ib­il­ity is on the line.”

“Yes, I’d like to watch him com­mit polit­ic­al sui­cide.”

No

“An im­peach­able event.”

“He passed the buck with no in­ten­tion of tak­ing it back. En­emies of this coun­try have learned much from this epis­ode — and none of it is good for our in­ter­na­tion­al in­terests.”

“Not a chance with such high pub­lic-dis­ap­prov­al rates.”

“He has boxed him­self in. Without ap­prov­al, he risks huge back­lash.”

“It will bust his brand, as well as go against a sol­id ma­jor­ity of Amer­ic­ans.”

“If Con­gress votes this down, it is be­cause of over­whelm­ing op­pos­i­tion from the Amer­ic­an pub­lic.”

“Once you ask Dad for per­mis­sion to bor­row the car and he says no, it’s too late to just take it.”

“It would make a mock­ery of the pres­id­ency and Con­gress.”

“In this case, only a fool would rush in where Con­gress fears to tread.”

“It’s one thing to just do. It’s an­oth­er to ask per­mis­sion, fail to get it, and do it any­way.”

… … … … …

Demo­crat­ic Polit­ic­al In­siders Jill Alp­er, John An­za­lone, Brad Ban­non, Dave Beat­tie, Andy Bech­hoe­fer, Cor­nell Belch­er, Matt Ben­nett, Mitchell W. Ber­ger, Mike Ber­man, Stephanie Bosh, Paul Brath­waite, Donna Brazile, Mark Brew­er, Ed Bruley, George Bruno, Bon­nie Camp­bell, Bill Car­rick, Guy Cecil, Mar­tin J. Chavez, Tony Coelho, Larry Co­hen, Jerry Craw­ford, Brendan Daly, Jeff Daniel­son, Peter Daou, Howard Dean, Scott De­Fife, Jim De­mers, Tad Dev­ine, Dav­id Di Mar­tino, Debbie Din­gell, Mon­ica Dix­on, Patrick Dor­ton, Pat Du­jakovich, An­ita Dunn, Jeff Eller, Steve El­men­d­orf, Carter Eskew, Vic Fazio, Peter Fenn, Scott Fer­son, Jim Fleischmann, Tina Flournoy, Don Fo­ley, Jef­frey For­bes, Vin­cent Fril­lici, Gina Glantz, Niles Godes, John Mi­chael Gonza­lez, Joe Grand­mais­on, Anna Green­berg, Stan Green­berg, Pat Griffin, Larry Griso­lano, Mi­chael Gron­stal, Lisa Grove, Mar­cia Hale, Jill Hanauer, Dick Har­poot­li­an, Paul Harstad, Laura Hartigan, Doug Hat­t­away, Mike Henry, Kar­en Hicks, Leo Hindery Jr., Har­old Ickes, Mar­cus Jadotte, John Jameson, Steve Jard­ing, Jona­thon Jones, Jim Jordan, Gale Kauf­man, Lisa Koun­toupes, Celinda Lake, Dav­id Lang, Penny Lee, Chris Le­hane, Jeff Link, Bob Malo­ney, Jim Man­ley, Steve Marchand, Jim Mar­gol­is, Paul Maslin, Keith Ma­son, Susan Mc­Cue, Ger­ald McEntee, Steve McMa­hon, Tom McMa­hon, Phil Mc­Namara, Dav­id Med­ina, Mi­chael Mee­han, Mark Mell­man, John Mer­rigan, Mi­chael Mon­roe, Steve Murphy, Janet Na­pol­it­ano, Dav­id Nas­sar, Mar­cia Nich­ols, John Nor­ris, Tom Ochs, Tom O’Don­nell, Jef­frey Peck, De­bora Pig­na­telli, Tony Podesta, Je­frey Pol­lock, Jack Quinn, Larry Rasky, Mame Re­iley, Ed Rendell, Steve Ric­chetti, Will Robin­son, Steve Rosenth­al, Dav­id Rudd, Ry­an Rudom­in­er, John Ry­an, Mi­chael Sar­geant, Stephanie Schriock, Terry Shu­maker, Sean Sin­clair, Phil Sing­er, Erik Smith, Doug Sosnik, Greg Speed, Darry Sragow, Ken Strasma, Doug Thor­nell, Jef­frey Tram­mell, Ed Tur­l­ing­ton, Rick Wien­er, James Wil­li­ams, JoDee Win­ter­hof, Bri­an Wolff, Jon Young­dahl, and Jim Zo­gby.

GOP Polit­ic­al In­siders Dan Al­len, Stan An­der­son, Gary An­dres, Saul­i­us (Saul) Anuzis, Rich Ashooh, Whit Ayres, Brett Bader, Mitch Bain­wol, Bri­an Baker, Gary Bauer, Dav­id Beck­with, Paul Ben­necke, Clark Ben­son, Wayne Ber­man, Bri­an Bieron, Charlie Black, Kirk Bla­lock, Car­mine Boal, Jeff Boeyink, Ron Bon­jean, Jeff Bu­ley, Luke Byars, Nick Calio, Al Carde­n­as, Danny Car­roll, Alex Cas­tel­lanos, Ron Christie, Jim Cic­coni, Jonath­an Col­le­gio, Rob Collins, Cesar Conda, Jake Cor­man, Scott Cot­ting­ton, Jay Cran­ford, Greg Crist, Di­ane Crookham-John­son, Fer­gus Cul­len, Tom Dav­is, Mike Den­nehy, Ken Duber­stein, Debi Durham, Sara Fa­gen, Frank Fahren­kopf, John Fee­hery, Don Fierce, Mindy Finn, Carl Forti, Alex Gage, Bruce A. Gates, Sam Geduldig, Adam Geller, Ben­jamin Gins­berg, Dav­id Gir­ard-di­Carlo, Bill Green­er, Jonath­an Grella, Lanny Grif­fith, Janet Mullins Gris­som, Doug Gross, Todd Har­ris, Steve Hart, Chris­toph­er Healy, Ral­ph Hell­mann, Chris Hen­ick, Terry Holt, Dav­id Ian­nel­li, Ed Ingle, Jim In­no­cenzi, Clark Judge, Dav­id Keat­ing, Dav­id Ken­sing­er, Bob Kjel­lander, Ed Kut­ler, Chris La­Civ­ita, Jim Lake, Steven Law, Steve Lom­bardo, Kev­in Mad­den, Joel Maiola, Gary Malo­ney, Dav­id Mar­in, Mary Matal­in, Dan Mat­toon, Bri­an Mc­Cor­mack, Mark McKin­non, Kyle Mc­Slar­row, Ken Mehl­man, Jim Mer­rill, Lisa Cam­ooso Miller, Tim Mor­ris­on, Mike Murphy, Phil Musser, Ron Nehring, Terry Nel­son, Neil Ne­w­house, Dav­id Nor­cross, Zi­ad Ojakli, Jack Oliv­er, Todd Olsen, Kev­in O’Neill, Con­nie Par­toy­an, Billy Piper, Van B. Poole, Tom Rath, Scott Reed, Dav­id Rehr, Tom Reyn­olds, Steve Roberts, Jason Roe, Dav­id Roeder­er, Dan Schnur, Russ Schriefer, Rich Schwarm, Brent Seaborn, Rick Shelby, An­drew Shore, Kev­in Shuvalov, Don Sipple, Ken Spain, Fred Steep­er, Bob Steven­son, Terry Sul­li­van, Dav­id Tamasi, Eric Tan­en­blatt, Richard Temple, Heath Thompson, Jay Tim­mons, War­ren Tomp­kins, Ted Van Der Meid, Dirk van Don­gen, Jan van Lo­huizen, Stew­art Ver­dery, Dick Wadhams, John Weaver, Lezlee West­ine, Dave Win­ston, Ginny Wolfe, Fred Wszolek, and Mat­thew Zablud.

If Congress does not approve a resolution to use force in Syria, should the president go ahead without lawmakers' approval?

DEMO­CRATS (94 VOTES)

Yes: 20%
No: 80%

Yes

“It’s the only way he avoids be­ing totally feck­less.”

“If Con­gress does noth­ing and tries to call it lead­er­ship, POTUS should leave all op­tions open to pro­tect U.S. val­ues and in­terests abroad.”

“He has no good op­tions, but he must act uni­lat­er­ally if the Syr­i­an chem­ic­al weapons can’t be taken away from As­sad.”

“Yes. He should have done it Aug. 22.”

“It is the right thing to do.”

No

“The Rus­si­an deal could save Obama from a vote, and that is his best hope to get out of this mess.”

“You can’t ask Con­gress for au­thor­iz­a­tion and then dis­reg­ard their vote.”

“If Con­gress turns the pres­id­ent down, the le­gis­lat­ive branch is just do­ing its job, and the only way for Pres­id­ent Obama to do his is to stand down.”

“He could, but he shouldn’t. He can’t ask Con­gress for per­mis­sion he didn’t even need and then just ig­nore it.”

“Once he has asked for ap­prov­al, he is ac­know­ledging leg­ally he needs it.”

“It is not clear that he leg­ally could do it, but it is clear that he can­not polit­ic­ally do it.”

“Why the hell do you ask for a vote if you can’t win it? If he loses, for­get it.”

“Can’t ask for per­mis­sion first, then for for­give­ness.”

“It would be polit­ic­al sui­cide.”

“He turned his fate over to them. He needs to live with it.”

If Congress does not approve a resolution to use force in Syria, should the president go ahead without lawmakers' approval?

RE­PUB­LIC­ANS (104 VOTES)

Yes: 26%
No: 74%

Yes

“Polit­ic­ally, yes. This thing has been so am­a­teur­ishly handled his only sav­ing play is to not weak­en pres­id­en­tial power for his suc­cessors.”

“The in­sti­tu­tion of the pres­id­ency de­mands he take some ac­tion at this point.”

“Yes, but for a dif­fer­ent reas­on than it’s the right thing to do. Obama tried to juke Syr­ia on the in­ter­na­tion­al court and sprained his ankle. Now he needs SOMEONE to help him up.”

“He should have nev­er asked.”

“Polit­ics aside, he set a line and OUR cred­ib­il­ity is on the line.”

“Yes, I’d like to watch him com­mit polit­ic­al sui­cide.”

No

“An im­peach­able event.”

“He passed the buck with no in­ten­tion of tak­ing it back. En­emies of this coun­try have learned much from this epis­ode — and none of it is good for our in­ter­na­tion­al in­terests.”

“Not a chance with such high pub­lic-dis­ap­prov­al rates.”

“He has boxed him­self in. Without ap­prov­al, he risks huge back­lash.”

“It will bust his brand, as well as go against a sol­id ma­jor­ity of Amer­ic­ans.”

“If Con­gress votes this down, it is be­cause of over­whelm­ing op­pos­i­tion from the Amer­ic­an pub­lic.”

“Once you ask Dad for per­mis­sion to bor­row the car and he says no, it’s too late to just take it.”

“It would make a mock­ery of the pres­id­ency and Con­gress.”

“In this case, only a fool would rush in where Con­gress fears to tread.”

“It’s one thing to just do. It’s an­oth­er to ask per­mis­sion, fail to get it, and do it any­way.”

… … … … …

Demo­crat­ic Polit­ic­al In­siders Jill Alp­er, John An­za­lone, Brad Ban­non, Dave Beat­tie, Andy Bech­hoe­fer, Cor­nell Belch­er, Matt Ben­nett, Mitchell W. Ber­ger, Mike Ber­man, Stephanie Bosh, Paul Brath­waite, Donna Brazile, Mark Brew­er, Ed Bruley, George Bruno, Bon­nie Camp­bell, Bill Car­rick, Guy Cecil, Mar­tin J. Chavez, Tony Coelho, Larry Co­hen, Jerry Craw­ford, Brendan Daly, Jeff Daniel­son, Peter Daou, Howard Dean, Scott De­Fife, Jim De­mers, Tad Dev­ine, Dav­id Di Mar­tino, Debbie Din­gell, Mon­ica Dix­on, Patrick Dor­ton, Pat Du­jakovich, An­ita Dunn, Jeff Eller, Steve El­men­d­orf, Carter Eskew, Vic Fazio, Peter Fenn, Scott Fer­son, Jim Fleischmann, Tina Flournoy, Don Fo­ley, Jef­frey For­bes, Vin­cent Fril­lici, Gina Glantz, Niles Godes, John Mi­chael Gonza­lez, Joe Grand­mais­on, Anna Green­berg, Stan Green­berg, Pat Griffin, Larry Griso­lano, Mi­chael Gron­stal, Lisa Grove, Mar­cia Hale, Jill Hanauer, Dick Har­poot­li­an, Paul Harstad, Laura Hartigan, Doug Hat­t­away, Mike Henry, Kar­en Hicks, Leo Hindery Jr., Har­old Ickes, Mar­cus Jadotte, John Jameson, Steve Jard­ing, Jona­thon Jones, Jim Jordan, Gale Kauf­man, Lisa Koun­toupes, Celinda Lake, Dav­id Lang, Penny Lee, Chris Le­hane, Jeff Link, Bob Malo­ney, Jim Man­ley, Steve Marchand, Jim Mar­gol­is, Paul Maslin, Keith Ma­son, Susan Mc­Cue, Ger­ald McEntee, Steve McMa­hon, Tom McMa­hon, Phil Mc­Namara, Dav­id Med­ina, Mi­chael Mee­han, Mark Mell­man, John Mer­rigan, Mi­chael Mon­roe, Steve Murphy, Janet Na­pol­it­ano, Dav­id Nas­sar, Mar­cia Nich­ols, John Nor­ris, Tom Ochs, Tom O’Don­nell, Jef­frey Peck, De­bora Pig­na­telli, Tony Podesta, Je­frey Pol­lock, Jack Quinn, Larry Rasky, Mame Re­iley, Ed Rendell, Steve Ric­chetti, Will Robin­son, Steve Rosenth­al, Dav­id Rudd, Ry­an Rudom­in­er, John Ry­an, Mi­chael Sar­geant, Stephanie Schriock, Terry Shu­maker, Sean Sin­clair, Phil Sing­er, Erik Smith, Doug Sosnik, Greg Speed, Darry Sragow, Ken Strasma, Doug Thor­nell, Jef­frey Tram­mell, Ed Tur­l­ing­ton, Rick Wien­er, James Wil­li­ams, JoDee Win­ter­hof, Bri­an Wolff, Jon Young­dahl, and Jim Zo­gby.

GOP Polit­ic­al In­siders Dan Al­len, Stan An­der­son, Gary An­dres, Saul­i­us (Saul) Anuzis, Rich Ashooh, Whit Ayres, Brett Bader, Mitch Bain­wol, Bri­an Baker, Gary Bauer, Dav­id Beck­with, Paul Ben­necke, Clark Ben­son, Wayne Ber­man, Bri­an Bieron, Charlie Black, Kirk Bla­lock, Car­mine Boal, Jeff Boeyink, Ron Bon­jean, Jeff Bu­ley, Luke Byars, Nick Calio, Al Carde­n­as, Danny Car­roll, Alex Cas­tel­lanos, Ron Christie, Jim Cic­coni, Jonath­an Col­le­gio, Rob Collins, Cesar Conda, Jake Cor­man, Scott Cot­ting­ton, Jay Cran­ford, Greg Crist, Di­ane Crookham-John­son, Fer­gus Cul­len, Tom Dav­is, Mike Den­nehy, Ken Duber­stein, Debi Durham, Sara Fa­gen, Frank Fahren­kopf, John Fee­hery, Don Fierce, Mindy Finn, Carl Forti, Alex Gage, Bruce A. Gates, Sam Geduldig, Adam Geller, Ben­jamin Gins­berg, Dav­id Gir­ard-di­Carlo, Bill Green­er, Jonath­an Grella, Lanny Grif­fith, Janet Mullins Gris­som, Doug Gross, Todd Har­ris, Steve Hart, Chris­toph­er Healy, Ral­ph Hell­mann, Chris Hen­ick, Terry Holt, Dav­id Ian­nel­li, Ed Ingle, Jim In­no­cenzi, Clark Judge, Dav­id Keat­ing, Dav­id Ken­sing­er, Bob Kjel­lander, Ed Kut­ler, Chris La­Civ­ita, Jim Lake, Steven Law, Steve Lom­bardo, Kev­in Mad­den, Joel Maiola, Gary Malo­ney, Dav­id Mar­in, Mary Matal­in, Dan Mat­toon, Bri­an Mc­Cor­mack, Mark McKin­non, Kyle Mc­Slar­row, Ken Mehl­man, Jim Mer­rill, Lisa Cam­ooso Miller, Tim Mor­ris­on, Mike Murphy, Phil Musser, Ron Nehring, Terry Nel­son, Neil Ne­w­house, Dav­id Nor­cross, Zi­ad Ojakli, Jack Oliv­er, Todd Olsen, Kev­in O’Neill, Con­nie Par­toy­an, Billy Piper, Van B. Poole, Tom Rath, Scott Reed, Dav­id Rehr, Tom Reyn­olds, Steve Roberts, Jason Roe, Dav­id Roeder­er, Dan Schnur, Russ Schriefer, Rich Schwarm, Brent Seaborn, Rick Shelby, An­drew Shore, Kev­in Shuvalov, Don Sipple, Ken Spain, Fred Steep­er, Bob Steven­son, Terry Sul­li­van, Dav­id Tamasi, Eric Tan­en­blatt, Richard Temple, Heath Thompson, Jay Tim­mons, War­ren Tomp­kins, Ted Van Der Meid, Dirk van Don­gen, Jan van Lo­huizen, Stew­art Ver­dery, Dick Wadhams, John Weaver, Lezlee West­ine, Dave Win­ston, Ginny Wolfe, Fred Wszolek, and Mat­thew Zablud.

What We're Following See More »
TAKING A LONG VIEW TO SOUTHERN STATES
In Dropout Speech, Santorum Endorses Rubio
2 days ago
THE DETAILS

As expected after earlier reports on Wednesday, Rick Santorum ended his presidential bid. But less expected: he threw his support to Marco Rubio. After noting he spoke with Rubio the day before for an hour, he said, “Someone who has a real understanding of the threat of ISIS, real understanding of the threat of fundamentalist Islam, and has experience, one of the things I wanted was someone who has experience in this area, and that’s why we decided to support Marco Rubio.” It doesn’t figure to help Rubio much in New Hampshire, but the Santorum nod could pay dividends down the road in southern states.

Source:
‘PITTING PEOPLE AGAINST EACH OTHER’
Rubio, Trump Question Obama’s Mosque Visit
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

President Obama’s decision to visit a mosque in Baltimore today was never going to be completely uncontroversial. And Donald Trump and Marco Rubio proved it. “Maybe he feels comfortable there,” Trump told interviewer Greta van Susteren on Fox News. “There are a lot of places he can go, and he chose a mosque.” And in New Hampshire, Rubio said of Obama, “Always pitting people against each other. Always. Look at today – he gave a speech at a mosque. Oh, you know, basically implying that America is discriminating against Muslims.”

Source:
THE TIME IS NOW, TED
Cruz Must Max Out on Evangelical Support through Early March
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

For Ted Cruz, a strong showing in New Hampshire would be nice, but not necessary. That’s because evangelical voters only make up 21% of the Granite State’s population. “But from the February 20 South Carolina primary through March 15, there are nine states (South Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, and North Carolina) with an estimated white-Evangelical percentage of the GOP electorate over 60 percent, and another four (Texas, Kansas, Louisiana, and Missouri) that come in over 50 percent.” But after that, he better be in the catbird’s seat, because only four smaller states remain with evangelical voter majorities.

Source:
CHRISTIE, BUSH TRYING TO TAKE HIM DOWN
Rubio Now Winning the ‘Endorsement Primary’
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Since his strong third-place finish in Iowa, Marco Rubio has won endorsement by two sitting senators and two congressmen, putting him in the lead for the first time of FiveThirtyEight‘s Endorsement Tracker. “Some politicians had put early support behind Jeb Bush — he had led [their] list since August — but since January the only new endorsement he has received was from former presidential candidate Sen. Lindsey Graham.” Meanwhile, the New York Times reports that fueled by resentment, “members of the Bush and Christie campaigns have communicated about their mutual desire to halt … Rubio’s rise in the polls.”

Source:
ARE YOU THE GATEKEEPER?
Sanders: Obama Is a Progressive
2 days ago
THE LATEST

“Do I think President Obama is a progressive? Yeah, I do,” said Bernie Sanders, in response to a direct question in tonight’s debate. “I think they’ve done a great job.” But Hillary Clinton wasn’t content to sit out the latest chapter in the great debate over the definition of progressivism. “In your definition, with you being the gatekeeper of progressivism, I don’t think anyone else fits that definition,” she told Sanders.

×