Barack Obama on publicity blitz to sell Syria attack to Congress
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After spending most of his time over the weekend calling up and meeting lawmakers, President Barack Obama will go all out on a media publicity blitz over the next two days to convince war-weary Americans that an attack on Syria is needed for the long-term safety of the US.
Obama yesterday dropped by the dinner that Vice President Joe Biden hosted for several Republican Senators at his residence. Among those in attendance were Lindsey Graham, Susan Collins, Saxby Chambliss, Bob Corker, Kelly Ayotte and Deb Fischer.
The White House has said President Obama will sit for interviews with six TV networks on Tuesday as he makes his case to the nation for military intervention in Syria. These news channels include ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN and Fox News. This is probably for the first time that Obama would be giving interviews to all these six major news channels on the same day. He is also scheduled to hold a series of meetings with top lawmakers over the next two days as part of his effort to give a final push for the attack on Syria.
Such a rare move by Obama comes as both the Chambers of Congress House of Representatives and Senate are expected to debate and vote on his request for a Congressional authorisation for a military strike against Syria.
Obama's Chief of Staff Dennis McDonough yesterday exuded confidence that the White House would be able to get the necessary Congressional authorisation. He also claimed that the US has necessary international support.
"I've been talking to dozens of members of Congress over the last week. Not a single one of them so far has rebutted or refused the intelligence, which is to say everybody agrees that on August 21st, (President Bashar) Assad used chemical weapons against his own people," he told the ABC News.