Blumenthal Statement On Senate Vote On Continuing Resolution, Authority To Train And Equip Moderate Syrian Opposition Forces

(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) today released the following statement after voting in favor of the Continuing Resolution, which, in addition to preventing a government shutdown, provides authority for the Defense Department to train and equip moderate Syrian opposition forces:

“Inaction against ISIL is unacceptable. This savage terrorist organization is a clear and urgent threat. This narrow authorization enables training of moderate Syrians to fight ISIL in their own country. It is limited in time and scope, and it explicitly prohibits American troops in combat. I continue to have concerns and questions, including the need for more specific firm commitments from countries in the region as well as global allies, and sufficient assurances that the arms and training will be used for our interests, not against us.

“The Senate will be voting again on this authorization because this one expires on December 11. My position in future votes will depend on whether my concerns and questions are answered. Chief among my concerns is whether Arab nations commit themselves significantly and vigorously to the fight against ISIL’s inhumane and dangerous brutality and ideology.

“An important consideration in my vote today was the need to prevent a government shutdown.”