Montana’s congressional delegation expressed “concern” over what is unfolding in Syria after President Donald Trump announced a withdrawal of U.S. troops there.
U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, a Democrat, and Republicans U.S. Sen. Steve Daines and U.S. Rep. Greg Gianforte all issued statements Monday, a federal holiday and during congressional recess, in response to questions from Lee Newspapers.
Trump's order to remove U.S. troops from Syria's northern border and the fallout have brought the Republican president criticism from both sides of the aisle, including from some of his biggest allies in Congress.
Daines is “concerned with the decision to withdraw forces from Northern Syria and the impacts on our national security interests,” according to a statement from a spokesperson.
Gianforte said through a statement from a spokesperson he is also “concerned with the national security ramifications of the U.S. withdrawal from Northern Syria, particularly as it relates to our allies in the region and the potential reemergence of ISIS terrorists.”
A spokesperson for Tester said the senator was also “deeply concerned that the president announced this withdrawal over the ongoing objections of his generals and military leaders, and he agrees with his Republican colleagues that abandoning our allies in the fight against ISIS undermines our standing in the world and will only threaten regional and global stability.”
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Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-NY, said following Trump’s order both the Senate and House are preparing a joint resolution imploring Trump to reverse course in Syria now.
While this story was being reported, Trump signed an executive order imposing sanctions on some Turkish officials. Several days ago, Wyoming Republican U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney said she would introduce a bill to sanction Turkey after that country launched an offensive in Northern Syria.
Tester’s spokesperson Monday said the senator is “reviewing the sanctions and other proposals against Turkey that his colleagues on both sides of the aisle plan to put forward after the October recess."
Gianforte’s spokesperson said the congressman is “monitoring the fluid situation in Northern Syria and considering what appropriate action Congress should take. … The U.S. must hold Turkey accountable for its aggression and for the promises (Turkey's) President Erdogan made to President Trump."
Daines’ spokesperson said Monday the senator supported sanctions and holding hearings on what’s happening in Syria.
“With Turkey’s invasion now underway, the senator believes we need to closely monitor the situation and hold Turkey accountable for the commitments they made to the president,” the spokesperson said. “The senator ... supports the president in placing tough sanctions against Turkey. Regarding resolutions, (the senator) will be reviewing resolution proposals that are currently being developed in the Senate.”