Obama continues efforts to sway lawmakers on Syria

WASHINGTON (AP) — He’s at the G-20 summit in Russia, but that isn’t stopping President Barack Obama from doing some lobbying with members of Congress back home. Obama is looking to build support for a resolution authorizing a U.S. military strike on Syria.

Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes says Obama’s been making phone calls to lawmakers even as he attends the economic summit. The president spoke to a bipartisan group of five lawmakers yesterday.

The administration held another round of closed-door meetings with lawmakers today about its intelligence on Syria. As she entered the meeting, Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine questioned the necessity of U.S. military action. She insisted there were other ways to pressure Syria’s Bashar Assad, short of an American intervention. And Collins said the administration still hasn’t presented a clear strategy.

Republican Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina said it’s up to the administration to present lawmakers with the necessary information. And when it does, he says, he thinks “everybody will agree.”

But Democrat Ron Wyden of Oregon remains undecided, saying it’s not clear what the effects of a military strike would be.

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169-w-36-(Sagar Meghani (SAH’-gur meh-GAH’-nee), AP national security correspondent, with Senator Barbara Mikulski, D-Md. and and Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine)–Lawmakers are hearing more from the administration today before deciding whether to authorize military action against Syria. AP National Security Correspondent Sagar Meghani reports from the Pentagon. (5 Sep 2013)

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166-a-14-(Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine, member, Senate Intelligence Committee, with reporters before classified briefing)-”of further entanglement”-Maine Senator Susan Collins says the administration hasn’t fully explained what happens the day after a military strike against Bashar Assad’s ability to conduct chemical weapons attacks. (5 Sep 2013)

<<CUT *166 (09/05/13)££ 00:14 “of further entanglement”

168-a-06-(Senator Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., member, Senate Intelligence Committee, with reporters before classified briefing)-”today and tomorrow”-Maryland Senator Barbara Mikulski says needs more information before deciding how to vote. (5 Sep 2013)

<<CUT *168 (09/05/13)££ 00:06 “today and tomorrow”

APPHOTO DCMC102: Deputy Director of National Intelligence Robert Cardillo leaves a closed-door Senate Intelligence Committee briefing on the situation in Syria, Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013, on Capitol Hill in Washington. President Barack Obama has requested congressional authorization of military intervention in Syria in response to last month’s alleged sarin gas attack in the Syrian civil war. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) (5 Sep 2013)

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APPHOTO DCMC104: Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., leaves after speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013, following a closed-door briefing with national security officials on the situation in Syria. President Barack Obama has requested congressional authorization of military intervention in Syria in response to an alleged sarin gas attack in the Syrian civil war. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) (5 Sep 2013)

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