Senators Robert Menendez and Bob Corker, the Democratic and Republican leaders of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, have offered a draft resolution
that would give the president limited authority to attack Syria in order to "deter" and "degrade" the Syrian military's capacity to use chemical weapons.
AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES.
(a) AUTHORIZATION-The President is authorized, subject to subsection (b), to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in a limited and tailored manner against legitimate military targets in Syria, only to: (1) respond to the use of weapons of mass destruction by the Syrian government in the conflict in Syria; (2) deter Syria’s use of such weapons in order to protect the national security interests of the United States and to protect our allies and partners against the use of such weapons; and (3) degrade Syria’s capacity to use such weapons in the future.
The resolution would initially give the president 60 days to act, though it also provides for an additional 30 day window subject to congressional disapproval. The resolution also includes language meant to quell concerns about the possibility of American boots on the ground, specifically:
The authority granted in section 2 does not authorize the use of the United States Armed Forces on the ground in Syria for the purpose of combat operations.
According to NBC's Kasie Hunt, Senator John McCain has already said he will not support the resolution. Presumably McCain believes the resolution's language is too narrow and believes President Obama should be granted broader authority, or should just move forward without Congress.
Meanwhile, in a press conference this morning in Sweden, President Obama continued making his case for attacking Syria, although he did acknowledge that Assad's use of chemical weapons likely did not pose an immediate threat to the United States. President Obama said that despite the obsession by many reporters and Republicans with his "red line" language from 2012, his own personal credibility wasn't at stake: Instead, he said, the the credibility of the opposition to chemical weapons by international community, including America as a nation, and Congress in particular, is on the line.