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Senate votes to admonish Trump on Middle East troop pullout

03 February 2019

"The American people do not want endless war".

The move marks a rare break with the president for McConnell.

President Trump meets with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He in the Oval Office at the White House on Thursday.

Mr. Trump in December also asked the Pentagon to draw up plans for withdrawal from Afghanistan.

"President Trump proposed logical solutions", said Sen.

Ahead of the preliminary vote, Republicans Senator Marco Rubio said Trump's planned withdrawal was a "bad idea".

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Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont said he thinks Trump announced the withdrawals too abruptly, but the USA has been in Afghanistan and Syria for too long.

McConnell didn't frame the measure as a reproach to the president, but he said before the vote that "I've been clear about my own views on these subjects".

Several potential Democratic presidential hopefuls voted no on the amendment, Senators Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Jeff Merkley, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren.

Sources say the advance vote by the US Senate mainly seeks advance an amendment seeking to rein in Trump's announced withdrawal of US forces in the Middle East among other misgivings.

"Nothing to me is more revealing of the core pathology of the modern Republican Party the way that it sees widening access to the ballot and higher turnout as a threat", he said.

"I'm for whatever works, which means avoiding a shutdown and avoiding the president feeling he should declare a national emergency, " McConnell said in his weekly news conference in the Capitol.

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US officials, including Vice President Mike Pence, have said Trump is in the "process of evaluating" whether to withdraw some troops from Afghanistan, where they have been since 2001. The new members of the Senate Armed Services Committee also wrote in a letter to Trump that abandoning allies and doing nothing to prevent their slaughter undermines the global effort to defeat ISIS and jeopardizes the country's honor. He said of the message it sends to Trump: "That we're a coequal branch of government and have coequal responsibility for foreign relations". For aspiring reformers of the way the United States conducts itself overseas, it's rather inconsistent of McConnell to invoke a need for congressional oversight, when there has been no greater handmaiden of status-quo approaches elsewhere. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said the vote showed Congress is a "co-equal branch of government".

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) set social media alight on Wednesday after he described legislation to make Election Day a paid holiday for federal workers as a "power grab" by Democrats.

I'm heading to the Senate floor right now to speak against Senator McConnell's Syria amendment.

A final vote on the amendment could come next week.

This article was written by Karoun Demirjian, a reporter for The Washington Post.

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Senate votes to admonish Trump on Middle East troop pullout