Apr 7, 2017 3:42 PM

Most of NH delegation calls Trump's decision to launch missiles on Syria 'appropriate'


CONCORD - Members of the New Hampshire delegation are supportive of the Trump administration's decision to launch airstrikes on a Syrian airfield.

All four had a common message: in the future, the president must go to Congress to obtain an Authorization for the Use of Military Force before conducting such strikes.

The United States launched an overnight missile attack in response to President Bashar Assad's use of chemical weapons against his own people.

READ: US strike on Syria is widely hailed, but angers Russia

On Friday, all four members of the New Hampshire delegation issued statements regarding the decision.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, Sen. Maggie Hassan and Rep. Annie Kuster all released statements in favor of the decision.

Sen. Shaheen -- who is a member of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees -- was first to issue a statement and outwardly supported it.

“In 2013 when Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons on his own people, I voted to support military action,” Shaheen said. “Since then, Assad’s brutality has continued unabated. His use of chemical weapons on innocent civilians has struck the moral conscience of the United States and the world."

Shaheen went on to say that in the future, President Trump must explain his strategy to end conflict in Syria and be "fully transparent with Congress and the American people" about his use of troops to do so.

Sen. Hassan was next to release a statement, saying the missile strikes were "appropriate" and send a "clear message" about America's stance on acts against humanity.

“The U.S. military strikes against the Syrian airfield where Assad launched chemical weapons attacks against innocent civilians represent an appropriate response," she said.

Hassan echoed Shaheen's sentiment about the Trump administration outlining a clear strategy moving forward and consult with Congress on it.

Congresswoman Annie Kuster also called the airstrikes "appropriate," affirming that the United States shouldn't engage in "another protracted war in the Middle East."

Kuster also joined her colleagues by saying Trump

"The American people deserve an open debate about the use of military force and President Trump and his advisors must develop a thorough diplomatic and political strategy for how to move forward in Syria," she said.

Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter is the only member of the delegation to not take a clear stance on the airstrikes.

In a statement, she said she attended a classified briefing about the strikes. She also called on President Trump to take up the position he took in a tweet in 2013 when he wrote, "The President must get Congressional approval before attacking Syria."

“While our military strike was measured and carried out to send a warning, the situation on the ground is very complex and requires an accompanying diplomatic and humanitarian strategy," Shea-Porter said.

Shea-Porter is on the House Armed Services Committee. She said she also called on the Obama administration in 2013 to present a detailed strategy moving forward, just as she's asking the president to do now.

On Friday afternoon, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned that the U.S. is prepared to take further action in Syria, but she hopes it will not be necessary.

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