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Some members of Congress skeptical over action against Syria
WASHINGTON (NEWSCHANNEL 3) Newschannel 3 is keeping a close eye on the crisis in Syria as the Obama administration makes its case to lawmakers, revealing there is more evidence poison gas was used on civilians in Damascus.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says he's confident congress will approve President Obama's request to use military force in Syria.
Kerry says the United States now has evidence a deadly nerve agent was used in a chemical attack on civilians in Syria. Those samples of hair and blood have been tested and they have reported positive for signatures of sarin," he says.
Obama wants the U.S. to respond with military force, but says he'll wait until he gets congressional approval.
National security advisers went to Capitol Hill Sunday to convince senate and house members to support limited military action.
"I think the administration has presented to Congress a strong case," Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-Va.) says.
Not everyone was convinced.
"I'm still very skeptical," Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.) says. "I'm not sure what results of this attack would be meaning will it be effective."
Many members of congress aren't ready to say how they'll vote.
Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) says, "I'm not going to answer that part until we have a lot more questions answered that in my mind need to be answered."
Republican Sen. John McCain (Az.) wants more information from the White House. "We're in a bit of a dilemma here because I think Sen. Lindsey Graham and I, and others, will be wanting a strategy, a plan, rather than just 'we're going to launch some cruise missiles and that's it.'"
The White House claims last month Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime used chemical weapons to kill more than 1,400 civilians, including 426 children in Damascus.
Next week, Congress will start debating how the U.S. should respond to the alleged attack. Administration officials say they're confident the commander-in-chief will get congressional backing.
The Assad regime denies using chemical weapons and argues the U.S. decision to delay a military strike shows president Obama is confused.
The United Nations is also investigating what happened. On Sunday, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon asked his chemical weapons inspectors to expedite its findings.