Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a vocal supporter of President Obama’s push for Congress to authorize a military strike on Syria, said Sunday on “This Week” that he had reached out to the White House and offered to help build support but did not hear back from the administration last week.
“Look, I think it’s going to be very difficult for him to get votes and I think this goes back, not just to the issue itself, but you can’t begin to build a relationship with Congress for the first time when you need their support on something like this,” Kinzinger said on the “This Week” roundtable. “I mean look, a week – or a week and a half ago – my office actually reached out to the White House and said, ‘Hey we support the strike on Syria, we’re going to help you round up support if you need it,’ I haven’t heard back from the White House yet.”
“I haven’t heard back from anyone, I don’t even know who my White House liaison is, which is supposed to be creating this relationship,” Kinzinger added. ” So now we find ourselves in a situation where I think the president has made the decision correctly that the cost of using chemical weapons should far exceed the benefit that anybody gains from it and he’s trying to build a relationship with Congress and there’s a trust deficit.”
Following his comments on “This Week,” Kinzinger’s office confirmed that the White House did reach out Sunday to the Illinois Republican and Air Force veteran.
“Congressman Kinzinger did receive a call from the White House after the show. They expressed a desire to work with him in the coming days,” Kinzinger Communications Director Zach Hunter told ABC News.
On the “This Week” roundtable, Kinzinger predicted a vote would fail in the House to authorize a military strike on Syria.
The White House is in the midst of a media blitz as it seeks to bolster Congressional support for a military strike on Syria after the regime’s alleged use of chemical weapons. The president will address the nation in a televised addressed Tuesday and will speak with the major U.S. television networks — including ABC News — and PBS tomorrow.
An unofficial tally by ABC News suggests that a resolution to strike Syria would fail in the House of Representatives and a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll found that nearly 6 in 10 Americans opposed a unilateral U.S strike on Syria.
John Parkinson and Imtiyaz Delawala contributed to this story.
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