LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- In his first time answering questions in Louisville since last week's Syrian strike, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell suggested that President Donald Trump's actions were constitutional, he does not need a declaration from Congress and the Tomahawk Missiles fired at an airbase used by the Assad regime and Russians sent a message
“It was an important message to Assad, beware of using chemical weapons again,” said the Senate Majority Leader. “An important message to the Russians who, I thought, said they got all of the chemical weapons out of Syria but obviously they weren't telling the truth about that.”
Senator McConnell said he backed the President’s decision adding that adversaries and allies took note that the Trump administration was taking a "basic reset" to the approach taken by President Barack Obama.
But the Kentucky Republican insisted that the strike alone won't end the conflict inside a nation where civilians have been gassed and terrorists find refuge.
“Whenever a real solution is reached in Syria, I can't imagine it to include the Assad regime surviving,” he said.
He defended the decision not to destroy the airfield. Some reports out of the Syria claim it was back in use within a day. But Senator McConnell said the message was in regards to using chemical weapons and a “dramatic departure” from the previous administration that was noticed by adversaries and allies around the globe.
Mr. McConnell also pointed out that the Russian government had told the Obama administration that they removed the chemical weapons from Syria. He added that the prior administration determined it was, “the perfect solution”.
Senator McConnell said, “Well it didn’t turn out too well.”
As for his take on what message President Trump should take from the Russian involvement in Syria? Senator McConnell said, “The one thing you can be sure about with the Russians is they're never up to any good and they're not our friend. And I think the new administration is figuring that out. They may have been somewhat confused about it during the campaign, but I think they're in the process of figuring that out.”
Leader McConnell also spoke about the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, healthcare reform and coal pension. You can see the entire news by clicking here.