April 7, 2017: Syrian Missile Strike, Neil Gorsuch

Overview:

  • Last night, the President authorized an attack on a Syrian air base, launching over 50 cruise missiles.
  • The final vote on the confirmation Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court is expected today at 11:45 AM EDT.

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Details/Context:

Syrian Missile Strike:

Last night, from a press conference at his Mar-a-Lago resort, the President said that the United States had responded to the Syrian government's use of chemical weapons by executing a missile strike on the Al Sharyat airfield in Syria. The President did not seek Congressional approval, nor consult with Congress before launching over 50 cruise missiles from warships in the Mediterranean.

Shortly after news of the attack broke, Rep. Barbara Lee tweeted, "This is an act of war. Congress needs to come back into session & hold a debate. Anything less is an abdication of our responsibility." Rep. Scott Peters also issued a press release expressing concerns about the president's unilateral action.

This news came on the same day that House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes recused himself from the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, amid announcements that he was under investigation by the House Ethics Committee. Also today, Trump met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, and the Senate invoked the "nuclear option" to advance the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

Relevant Links:

Neil Gorsuch:

Senate Republicans invoked the so-called "nuclear option" yesterday, voting 52-48 along party lines to change Senate rules to allow a simple majority to end debate on Supreme Court nominations. Shortly afterward, the Senate passed a cloture motion on the nomination, with three Democrats joining all Republicans in voting to end debate:

The final vote to confirm Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court is scheduled for 11:45 AM EDT today.

Relevant Links:


Conclusion/Call Script Overview

In light of the President's unilateral and unconsidered actions, I will be calling all of my federal elected representatives today and urging them to hold a debate regarding the missile strikes in Syria. Because I am appalled at the Assad regime's atrocities, I will ask them to push to get more help for Syrian refugees, including allowing them into this country, especially by co-sponsoring HR. 1503 and S 608 to overturn the second Muslim ban. I will ask them to support and co-sponsor HR. 669 and S. 200, to limit the President's ability to use nuclear weapons. Because I have concerns that this strike may take attention away from the Russia investigation, I will also ask them to continue pushing for an independent commission to investigate Russian interference in our elections, especially mentioning HR. 356 and S. 27.

Because the confirmation vote on Neil Gorsuch will happen fairly early on the West Coast, instead of calling to ask my Senators to vote against him, I will instead encourage everyone to call their Senators and thank them for voting against Gorsuch, or express disappointment that they voted for him.


Script for Calling Dianne Feinstein

"Hi, my name is _____ and I'm calling from _____ (zip code). I'm calling because I'm extremely concerned about the President's unilateral decision to launch a missile strike on a Syrian air strip yesterday. Although I am horrified by the Assad regime's atrocities, I believe that the United States cannot act alone against Assad, and Congress must ensure that we are not dragged into another foreign war on our own. I believe that the most humane thing for us to do is offer more assistance to Syrian families who are trying to escape the horrors of war, so I would like the Senator to please continue pushing to help the refugees, and I thank her for sponsoring S. 608 to overturn the ban. I am also very concerned about the President's judgment in the use of military force, so I would like to thank Senator Feinstein for being a co-sponsor of S. 200, to limit the President's ability to use nuclear weapons. Finally, I want to make sure that these military actions do not make the Senate lose its determination to investigate the Trump Administration's ties to Russia, so I thank Senator Feinstein for co-sponsoring S. 27, and I'd like to ask her to continue pushing for an independent commission to investigate those Russia ties. Thank you."

SD: (619) 231-9712
SF: (415) 393-0707
LA: (310) 914-7300
Fresno: (559) 485-7430
DC: (202) 224-3841

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Script for Calling Kamala Harris

"Hi, my name is _____ and I'm calling from _____ (zip code). I'm calling because I'm extremely concerned about the President's unilateral decision to launch a missile strike on a Syrian air strip yesterday. Although I am horrified by the Assad regime's atrocities, I believe that the United States cannot act alone against Assad, and Congress must ensure that we are not dragged into another foreign war on our own. I believe that the most humane thing for us to do is offer more assistance to Syrian families who are trying to escape the horrors of war, so I would like the Senator to please continue pushing to help the refugees, and I thank her for co-sponsoring S. 608 to overturn the ban. I am also very concerned about the President's judgment in the use of military force, so I would like to ask Senator Harris to please support and co-sponsor S. 200, to limit the President's ability to use nuclear weapons. I don't think any person as unstable as this President should have his finger on the nuclear trigger. Finally, I want to make sure that these military actions do not make the Senate lose its determination to investigate the Trump Administration's ties to Russia, so I'd like to ask Senator Harris to please co-sponsor S. 27, and to continue pushing for an independent commission to investigate those Russia ties. Thank you."

SD: (619) 239-3884
SF: (415) 355-9041
LA: (213) 894-5000
Fresno: (559) 497-5109
Sacramento: (916) 448-2787
DC: (202) 224-3553

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Script for Calling Scott Peters

"Hi, my name is _____ and I'm calling from _____ (zip code). I'm calling because I'm extremely concerned about the President's unilateral decision to launch a missile strike on a Syrian air strip yesterday. Although I am horrified by the Assad regime's atrocities, I believe that the United States cannot act alone against Assad, and Congress must ensure that we are not dragged into another foreign war on our own. I believe that the most humane thing for us to do is offer more assistance to Syrian families who are trying to escape the horrors of war, so I would like the Congressman to please continue pushing to get more aid for the refugees, especially by co-sponsoring HR. 1503 to get the Syrian refugee ban overturned. I am also very concerned about the President's judgment in the use of military force, so I would like to ask Congressman Peters to please support and co-sponsor HR. 669, to limit the President's ability to use nuclear weapons. I don't think any person as unstable as this President should have his finger on the nuclear trigger. Finally, I want to make sure that these military actions do not make the Senate lose its determination to investigate the Trump Administration's ties to Russia, so I thank Congressman Peters for co-sponsoring HR. 356, and I'd like to ask him to continue pushing for an independent commission to investigate those Russia ties. Thank you."

SD: (858) 455-5550
DC: (202) 225-0508

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