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“We obviously take very seriously the need for Congressional consultations,” Carney told pool reporters Wednesday on the flight back to the United States from El Salvador, where Obama had wrapped up a five-day tour of three Latin American nations. “We have done them and will continue to do them. I would also say that it’s important to remember that in the runup to this action we were criticized somewhat, in fact fairly frequently, by those who felt like we weren’t moving quickly enough. And now there are some who are criticizing us for not going — for going too quickly. What the president did was make an action based on ... an imminent threat of a humanitarian nature to a great number of Libyans, and he has done that with a great number of consultations with Congress that will continue.”
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was careful in a statement Wednesday to show her support for military intervention, while urging the president to bring Congress into the discussion.
“The United States joined the international community in preventing an imminent humanitarian crisis in Libya. ... Decisions made in the days ahead are strengthened by our NATO partners’ participation,” the California Democrat said. “U.S. participation is strengthened by the President’s continued consultation with Congress.”
Three top Senate Democrats came to Obama’s defense Wednesday, praising his handling of the situation during a conference call with reporters.
“The reports are positive” about the intervention, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said. The Illinois Democrat was joined on the call with Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin (Mich.) and Armed Services member Jack Reed (R.I.).