Senate hearing on Syria resolution delayed

September 4, 2013

A Senate hearing scheduled to begin consideration of a new resolution authorizing U.S. military action in Syria has been pushed back almost two hours amid disagreements regarding its wording.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee plans to meet at 2 p.m. to begin debating the new resolution, after a hours-long closed-door briefing.

The resolution set to be debated "is not the same as the administration and it’ll be created by the committee and it will be slightly different and will have some limitations on it," Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) told reporters after the closed-door session. "It’s not finely crafted, it’ll be amended probably, votes on amendments will occur in the next hour or two.

Paul said he continues to be opposed to potential military action: "I don’t see a clear-cut or compelling American interest, I see a horrible tragedy but I don’t think our involvement will lessen the tragedy. It may well make the tragedy worse."

The new wording was released late Tuesday by a bipartisan group of senators on the committee. It would authorize up to 90 days of military action against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and bar the U.S. from deploying combat troops into the country. The plan also would require the White House to submit a plan to Congress within 30 days of the resolution's passage on how to end the violence in Syria through diplomatic means.

Wednesday's action in the Senate comes as top Obama administration officials are expected to face difficult questions from Republicans and Democrats on the House Foreign Affairs Committee about Obama's plan to strike targets within Syria.

Follow Ed O'Keefe on Twitter: @edatpost

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Aaron Blake · September 4, 2013