Adelson offered to sway Congress members on Syria vote

WASHINGTON (JTA) – Billionaire philanthropist Sheldon Adelson said he was willing to assist President Obama in making the case to Congress for a Syria strike.

“I would be willing to help out the administration, because I believe it’s the right thing to do,” Adelson, a leading backer of Republicans, told the National Journal in an interview on Monday, a day before Obama asked Congress to delay a vote on whether to strike Syria while he consults with Russia over a deal that would end Syria’s chemical weapons program


“He is our only—we don’t have any other commander in chief,”Adelson said.

Adelson, the chairman of the Republican Jewish Coalition, has been a major backer of GOP candidates, and spent tens of millions of dollars last year trying to unseat Obama.

He said he was ready to call in some “friends” to assist Obama in his quest to persuade Congress to back a strike on Syria to degrade its chemical weapons capability, believed to have been used last month in an attack that left more than 1,400 people, including hundreds of children, dead.

“Listen, I’m not qualified to turn this thing around. I mean I don’t have that kind of clout,” he said. “I might be able to call up a handful of friends, a couple handfuls of friends, and say, ‘This is the right thing to do, why don’t you support him.’ “