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Durbin, Kirk Support Syrian Action, Schakowsky Unsure

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Rep. Jan Schakowsky needs more answers before she can commit to a strike on Syria.

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Chicago Politicians Weigh in On Syria Debate

Local politicians speak about President Barack Obama's decision to seek congressional authorization before taking any action against Syria for using chemical weapons.

Sen. Durbin on Syria: 'I'm Against Boots on the Ground'

Sen. Dick Durbin said Friday United States involvement in Syria needs to be “carefully thought out” in order to avoid another war.
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Illinois lawmakers are considering how they will vote on taking military action against Syria.

On Wednesday, Sen. Dick Durbin and Sen. Mark Kirk expressed support for President Barack Obama's plan.

Durbin, who belongs to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was one of seven Democrats and three Republicans who authorized the military strike after two days of hearings featuring testimony from top administration officials.

Durbin spoke at the hearing and was quick to dismiss the notion that the Syrian situation was similar to the Bush administration's buildup to the Iraq war.

"I do want to say that I take very seriously the President's promise that we will not be putting boots on the ground in Syria," Durbin said. "I have been to too many funerals, visited too many disabled veterans, and I never want to see us do that again except when absolutely necessary for America's survival. I think what we did today was a step in the right direction, and I hope it makes us a safer world."

Meanwhile, Rep. Jan Schakowsky said Wednesday that she needed more answers before she could commit to a strike on Syria.

Schakowsky, who represents Illinois' 9th District and is a member of the Intelligence Committee, told reporters that she agrees with Obama that the use of chemical weapons cannot go unanswered, and also believes the intelligence the administration is receiving is accurate that Syrian leader Bashar Assad is responsible for chemical attacks on his people.

But as for an actual strike against the country, Schakowsky has reservations about the scope and the duration.

"The questions I really need answered are what does a limited strike really mean? The Senate heard the testimony yesterday that it would be no longer than 60 days, that there would be no boots on the ground, but what I'm really interested in knowing how is this really going to be effective? How is this going to make the situation better in Syria? Will our involvement of the military actually accomplish that?" Schakowsky said.

Obama said Wednesday that he believed Congress would vote for authorizing military force.

Related Topics Syria, Rep. Jan Schakowsky
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