Secretary of State John Kerry accused Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL) of playing politics with the crisis in Syria, during a tense exchange at a House Armed Services Committee hearing on Tuesday.
After Kerry noted that the Senate has delayed a vote on authorizing the use of force in Syria, Rep. Miller asserted that the delay was due to the Senate lacking the votes to pass such a measure. “You know that,” he chided.
“Actually, no I don’t,” Kerry said tersely.
“Well, I do,” Miller replied.
“Well, I’m glad you know something,” Kerry shot back.
“Do you want to play politics here, or do you want to get a policy in place?” Kerry later said. “The policy that could be put in place is to try to get this particular option of getting control of chemical weapons in place. If you want to undermine that, then play the politics.”
Video of the full exchange is below, via The Washington Post:
The exchange was one of a few heated moments during the hearing, for which Kerry was joined by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Much of the hearing was devoted to discussing Russia’s proposal to put Syria’s chemical weapons under international control — a proposal for which Secretary Kerry vowed “we’re not waiting for long.“