Political Insiders Poll

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

Peter Bell, Alex Roarty and Michael Catalini
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Peter Bell Alex Roarty and Michael Catalini
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?


Yes: 20%
No: 80%


“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.”


“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?


Yes: 26%
No: 74%


“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.”


“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.

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