The Campaign Spot

Lonegan, Booker Both Oppose U.S. Action in Syria

Steve Lonegan, the Republican nominee in New Jersey’s special election for the United States Senate, spent yesterday and today emphasizing his opposition to intervention in Syria.

“While there has been much tragedy, the war in Syria is not simply between the Syrian government and the Syrian rebels,” Lonegan said in a statement. “We must work with our allies to provide humanitarian aid to those affected by the war, but punitive actions in Syria will not deliver stability to the region.”

Yesterday, Lonegan held a press conference with Montvale, N.J., councilman Mike Ghassali and Archbishop Cyril Aphrem Karim of the Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch, urging President Obama to resist the temptation to take military action in Syria, and calling on Senator Bob Menendez, New Jersey’s Democratic senator, to reverse his position. Menendez, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, called for missile strikes and declared, “time is of the essence.”

Lonegan said: “The President should not intervene militarily without the consent of Congress. And given the facts we have today, I would vote against sending American men and women into Syria as a member of the United States Senate.” (Any U.S. military action in Syria is not likely to put American men and women in uniform directly into Syria; any attack is expected to rely on Tomahawk cruise missiles and other long-range weapons, fired from ships and submarines in the Mediterranean Sea.)

In a chat with the Huffington Post on August 28, Booker said, “My posture on Syria is that we should not be going to war. We should not be unleashing missiles.”

Cory Booker’s oft-mentioned friend, “T-Bone,” could not be reached for comment.

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