Politics

5:04pm

Tue September 3, 2013
Politics

Kerry Makes Case For U.S. Action In Syria

Obama administration officials are making their case for action in Syria, with several Cabinet officials appearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Secretary of State John Kerry argues that the U.S. needs to hold Bashar Assad's government accountable for the use of chemical weapons.

5:04pm

Tue September 3, 2013
Politics

Obama Gets Some Support For Military Action In Syria

Sixteen party leaders and key committee figures from both the House and Senate met with President Obama at the White House on Tuesday. House Speaker John Boehner was among those who emerged to say they backed the idea of military intervention in Syria.

4:28pm

Tue September 3, 2013
Politics

Senate Expected To Vote First On Syria Strikes

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 7:14 pm

President Obama pauses after speaking to media in the White House on Tuesday before a meeting with congressional leaders to discuss the situation in Syria. With the president: House Speaker John Boehner (from left), House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Sen. Dianne Feinstein.
Carolyn Kaster AP

President Obama cleared one of the most important hurdles Tuesday in his effort to win support in Congress for taking action against Syria: Both of the top Republican House leaders — Speaker John Boehner of Ohio and Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia — said they would support such a resolution.

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12:07pm

Tue September 3, 2013
The Two-Way

Boehner, Pelosi Unite Behind President On Syria

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 2:30 pm

President Obama met with more than a dozen lawmakers, including House Speaker John Boehner and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, at the White House on Tuesday to press his case for a military strike in Syria.
Carolyn Kaster AP

President Obama's call for Congress to give him the go-ahead to strike targets in Syria has put House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., on the same side of an important issue for one of the few times in recent years.

Calling Syrian President Bashar Assad's alleged use of chemical weapons "a barbarous act," Boehner emerged from a meeting at the White House to say he supports Obama's request.

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11:57am

Tue September 3, 2013
World

Washington Group Aiding Syrian Opposition

While President Obama is trying to convince members of Congress that action is needed in Syria, one Washington-based group is already aiding opposition forces. Host Michel Martin talks with Dan Layman of the Syrian Opposition Group about their efforts to fund the Free Syrian Army.

10:33am

Tue September 3, 2013
The Two-Way

Syria Resolution Will Hit Mark, Obama Predicts

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 11:25 am

The White House is working with congressional leaders to shape a resolution that authorizes the type of military action that would send a "clear message" to President Bashar Assad and cripple the Syrian leader's "capability to use chemical weapons not just now but in the future," President Obama said Tuesday.

Sitting with leaders from both major parties, the president also said he is confident lawmakers are "going to be able to come up with something that hits that mark."

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5:27am

Tue September 3, 2013
Politics

Rep. Smith On Syria: What Is The Limitation Of U.S. Power?

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 10:54 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

Here's a simple reality of democracy. The president can ask people for support, and if they give it, he's stronger. But they can also say no. That's the reason that presidents have often launched military action without a formal vote in Congress.

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5:15am

Tue September 3, 2013
Politics

Obama Meets With McCain, Graham About Syria Strikes

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 10:54 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

This morning, we're looking at how Members of Congress are responding to President Obama's call for military action in Syria.

INSKEEP: In fact, we can expect to hear many voices in that debate in the coming days on MORNING EDITION.

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3:02am

Tue September 3, 2013
Law

Justice Department Tackles Quality Of Defense For The Poor

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 11:37 am

People wait in line outside the Supreme Court in February. In a landmark decision half a century ago, the justices guaranteed a lawyer for criminal defendants who are too poor to afford one.
Evan Vucci AP

All over the country, lawyers who defend poor people in criminal cases have been sharing their stories about painful budget cuts. Some federal public defenders have shut their doors to new clients after big layoffs. And in many states, the public defense system has operated in crisis for years.

But an unprecedented recent court filing from the Justice Department has cheered the typically overburdened attorneys who represent the poor and could have dramatic implications for the representation of indigent defendants.

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3:31am

Mon September 2, 2013
Politics

Syria Resolution Could Be A Hard Sell On Capitol Hill

Originally published on Mon September 2, 2013 6:41 pm

From left, Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich., Rep. Robert Scott, D-Va., and Rep. Brad Schneider, D- ll., walk to a closed members-only briefing on Syria on Sunday.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Twenty-four hours after President Obama announced on Saturday that he'll wait for congressional authorization before launching strikes on Syria; members of Congress attended a classified briefing at the Capitol.

For days, most of the discontent among members of Congress has been about not being included in the deliberations on Syria, about not getting the chance to vote. Now that they've gotten their way, each member of Congress will have to go on the record.

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