Rep. Alan Grayson, a liberal Jewish Democrat, is planning to vote against President Obama’s proposal to authorize intervention in Syria — and predicts the measure will fail by a wide margin in the House of Representatives.
The Florida congressman told Politico that constituents in his Orlando-area district are dead set against getting involved in Syria’s brutal civil war, despite the president’s pleas that the U.S. has to punish the Syrian regime for using chemical weapons.
The House doesn’t want it, the American people don’t want it,” Grayson told the web site. “People here listen to their constituents. First of all, public opinion is entirely against it. Secondly, public opinion is vehemently against it.”
Pro-Israel and Jewish groups have lined up strongly in favor of Obama’s plan.
The American Israel Public Affairs Committee openly backed intervention in Syria, although it insisted it was not doing so out of concern for Israeli interests.
But it’s not clear if Jewish lawmakers, most of whom are liberal supporters of Obama, will line up behind the measure, especially with many Americans on both sides of the political spectrum skeptical of the plan. Two non-Jewish liberal Democrats voted against the proposal in the Senate foreign relations committee.
Tea Party Republicans are likely to vote against almost any proposal put forward by Obama. That means the president must convince a large majority of Democrats and moderate Republicans to back him.
Grayson says he believes large majorities of lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are leaning against the measure because of the strong public outcry against it.