Larson: Congress Should End Vacation, Get to Work on ISIS

Larson, D-Conn., says vacation is over and Congress needs to come back to work. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

With the White House weighing more air strikes against jihadists in northern Iraq and possibly Syria, Rep. John B. Larson said Congress needs to cancel its August recess and get back to work in Washington.  

The Connecticut Democrat said in a statement Tuesday that there are still open questions about whether President Barack Obama has the authority to take military action against the Islamic State, as the jihadists have named the region of Iraq and Syria under their control.  

Congress isn't scheduled to return to Washington until Sept. 8. From Larson's statement:  

"Rather than remaining at home second guessing and criticizing the President’s every move, Congress should be back in Washington and fully briefed. It remains unclear with regard to strikes in Syria whether the President needs Congressional authority. It is Congress’s duty to weigh in and clarify. As this serious situation continues to evolve, Congress has the responsibility to examine the issues and potentially vote on authorizing military force.  

“There is no question that Americans are weary of war. Given the gravity of the situation, their elected Representatives should be in Washington, working through these issues."  

Some Republicans, led by Arizona Sen. John McCain and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, have called for the White House to move much more aggressively in expanding the U.S. military role against the jihadists, including action in Syria.  

Related: Should Congress Authorize Air Strikes in Syria? Tim Kaine: Obama Needs Congressional Approval Hagel: Islamic State Bigger Threat Than al-Qaida Was Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.