U.S. Senators react to Obama's plan of attack against Islamic militants

09/11/2014 02:45 PM

Kentucky Congressional leaders expressed agreement with President Barack Obama following his remarks to strike the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Iraq and Syria.

In his speech on the floor of the U.S. Senate on Thursday, Sen. Mitch McConnell said he was “glad the president has brought a new focus to the effort against ISIL.”

“I’m hoping that the Congress will consider what this multi-year campaign will mean for the overall defense program, the need to modernize our military to retain dominance of the air and sea in the Asia Pacific theater, to revitalize NATO in the face of Russian aggression, and how to field additional force structure and combat power into U.S. Pacific Command now that Europe and Central Commands require additional tactical units and capabilities. Our nation must also rebuild the nuclear triad,” McConnell said.

Watch McConnell’s full remarks here:

In a nationally aired prime time television speech from the White House Wednesday night, Obama told the American people that he wants individuals to “understand how this effort will be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.”

Obama said that this conflict will not include United States ground troops, but rather a steady effort of air power with the support of partnering forces on the ground.

In the speech, Obama said that he would not hesitate to take action against extremists in Syria and Iraq.

“If you threaten America, you will find no safe haven.”

Watch Obama’s full remarks below:

In a foreign policy response directly after the president’s speech, Kentucky U.S. Sen. Rand Paul spoke with Fox News host Sean Hannity about the content of the speech and what he feels is the correct approach to addressing the threat of the terrorist group.

Paul agreed with some of the president’s remarks including the sentiment that leaders in that part of the world need to step up to the plate in the situation. And the junior senator also said that while he is normally not one to support U.S. interventions, he is behind this effort but added that the United States needs to take a step back in order to understand how the country landed in this position.

“While I do support doing whatever it takes to take out ISIS, we need to remember how we got here, and the reason we got here is because we took it upon ourselves to topple secular dictators who are the enemy of radical Islam,” Paul said on the news program.

You can see the whole interview with Sen. Paul here:

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes criticized Obama for not presenting a plan earlier, but said she supported action to take down the terrorists.

“While the President should have offered the American people a credible plan to destroy ISIS much earlier, I am supportive of taking strong military action to hunt down the terrorists that have killed American journalists,” Grimes said in a statement. “However, I remain opposed to the use of American ground forces. We must work to build a broad coalition, that includes our allies in the region, to provide ground support and share responsibility and cost for defeating ISIS.”

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