On Friday, British Prime Minister David Cameron secured parliamentary support for the U.K. to join the U.S.-led airstrikes against ISIS, though the Brits are only conducting such airstrikes in Iraq, not Syria. That prompted Senator Tim Kaine (D-Virginia) to say today that it's time for President Obama to do likewise here in America - that is, call in Congress to authorize his military action to "degrade and ultimately destroy ISIS" in Iraq and Syria.
"We're not supposed to start a war without Congress," Kaine told CBS' Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer. "We shouldn't be putting our men and women in harms way without a political consensus that the mission is worth it."
The Obama administration says that they don't necessarily need another vote from Congress, instead citing the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force against al Qaeda for the new ISIS war.
On ABC's This Week, House Speaker John Boehner said that contrary to reports that he doesn't want Congress to go on record until January about the war, he would bring the House back into session immediately - but only if President Obama asks.
Boehner said that "typically in a situation like this" the President would have already called in Congress for a vote, and then attempted to sell that to the American public. And he told ABC's George Stephanopoulous that he agrees with Obama that he already has authorization to attack ISIS. But when asked about the rumor that he is afraid to bring the measure up in Congress because it might not pass, the House Speaker vehemently disagreed, and said that he would bring the House back for a vote, but only IF the President called on him to do so.
And Boehner seconded what other military analysts have said - it will take more than just airstrikes to drives ISIS out of Iraq - namely, ground troops.
“American?” Stephanopoulos asked.
“Listen,” Boehener said. “The president doesn’t want to do that. If I were the president, I probably wouldn’t have talked about what I wouldn’t do. And maybe we can get enough of these forces trained to get ‘em on the battlefield. But somebody’s boots have to be there.”
“And if no one else will step up,” Stephanopoulos pressed, “you would you recommend putting American boots on the ground?”
“We have no choice,” Boehner said. “These are barbarians. They intend to kill us. And if we don’t destroy them first, we’re gonna pay the price.”