Just how serious is Barack Obama about getting authorization from Congress to launch a strike on Syria?
A Republican representative from Illinois, Adam Kinzler (my congressman), wants to help round up votes for the war resolution but no one at the White House has bothered to get back to him.
"I don't even know who my White House liaison is," a frustrated Representative Adam Kinzinger, who supports military action in Syria, said on This Week this morning.
The Illinois Republican told George Stephanopoulos that his office reached out to the White House to help "round up support" for authorization last week. "I haven't heard back from the White House yet -- I haven't heard back from anyone," he said.
Kinzinger praised President Obama's assessment of this situation in Syria, but said the "trust deficit" with Congress will prevent it from passing. "You can't begin to build a relationship with Congress for the first time when you need their support on something like this," he said.
Got that right. And I should point out that it may be the sheer incompetence of Obama's congressional lobbying shop that's at fault here.
But there is also the possibility that the president has given up on getting authorization in the House and will make a supreme effort in the Senate so that when the lower chamber votes him down, he can still claim that one chamber of congress gave him the go-ahead and that the usual Washington "gridlock" is to blame.
It would satisfy no one, but probably give him enough of a fig leaf that attacking Assad would not lead to his impeachment.