WASHINGTON - A day after the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a resolution authorizing the use of military force against Syria, U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin said Thursday he believes a strike against the Bashar Assad regime is "the wrong course of action at this time."
Manchin, D-W.Va., said over the past few weeks, he's attended classified briefings and heard testimony from U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Secretary of State John Kerry and Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Manchin believes the country must exhaust all diplomatic options before using military force against the Assad regime, which stands accused of using sarin gas to kill hundreds of Syrians.
"In good conscience, I cannot support the Senate Foreign Relations Committee's resolution and will be working with my colleagues and the administration to develop other options," he said.
Manchin is a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. The Foreign Relations Committee resolution - passed Wednesday in a 10-7 vote - is expected to come before the full Senate for a vote next week.