Walz: No to Syria proposal after seeking constituents’ opinion and owning foe


First District Congressman Tim Walz (DFL-Mankato) has come out against a proposal for American military action in Syria, according to a statement issued by his office.

The decision comes three days after a “Congress on Your Corner” listening session in St. Peter dedicated to the question. Around 150 constituents showed up to share a universal sentiment: vote no. Walz showed up to listen.  One wannabe opponent, Jim Hagedorn of the Beltway and Blue Earth, showed up to argue.

Conveniently, he’s posted a video of their meeting on Facebook, and as the non-partisan tipster who sent us a link noted:

This is great.

Hagedorn posted his whole bit with Walz at the St. Peter event on Syria.

[Walz] absolutely lays waste to the guy. It’s great.

Here’s Walz’s statement:

Walz Opposed to Syria Proposals
Travels back to DC with message from southern Minnesotans: No on Syria

“While I believe the use of chemical weapons is despicable and the world must take action to ensure that cruel dictators are not allowed to use such weapons without repercussions, at this time I cannot in good conscience support current proposals to take unilateral, military action.”

Walz cited his skepticism that even limited military action would stay limited due to unforeseen consequences and his concern that it could result in American boots on the ground with no defined strategy to bring them home.

In the past two weeks, Representative Walz has reached out to southern Minnesotans for their input, participated in a classified briefing in DC, and studied proposals for intervention. On Friday, residents from across southern Minnesota, of varying political beliefs, showed up to share their opinion with Representative Walz at his Congress on Your Corner event in St. Peter. The message has been clear and consistent: oppose unilateral, US military intervention.

Representative Walz commended President Obama for seeking Congressional approval before launching military strikes saying, “After 12 years of war, the American public has every right to weigh in and expect that their views be represented in Congress.”

In August, Representative Walz joined over 100 of his colleagues in sending President Obama a letter urging him to consult with Congress before taking military action in Syria.

Here’s the video of Hagedorn seeking to insert his campaign into the listening session, which was an official gathering rather than a campaign event.

Like the tipster, we’re totally impressed at the way Walz doesn’t let Hagedorn troll him with abstract kvetching about policy (not that Hagedorn can mention a  specific Walz vote or position) but brings the conversation back to the subject at hand.

Earlier post about the event  Sour losers: Julie Quist bitches about Walz’s two hours spent with constituents at St. Peter Co-op.