By Max Hrenda
Before U.S. Rep. Dr. Phil Roe addressed the gathering at the Johnson County Rescue Squad building, he asked for a moment of silence in memory of Spc. Fred Greene, a Mountain City native who was killed by Maj. Nidal Hasan at Fort Hood, Texas.
Although Roe began the meeting in silence for the military, when the discussion turned to the potential U.S. military action in Syria, he was far from silent.
“If Phil Roe had to vote this afternoon, I’d vote no,” Roe said. “I don’t see that it’s in the interest of the United States of America, and I’m going to say that on the House floor, I’m going to say it to our leadership, and to anyone who will listen.”
On Thursday afternoon, Roe held a town hall meeting in Mountain City to, among other things, determine how people in his district felt about the proposed U.S. military intervention in Syria.
“I want to search out your opinion, because I am your representative,” Roe said. “I’m going to go back and represent the majority of views, as I see them, in this district.”
On Wednesday, a Senate panel voted 10-7, with one abstaining, in favor of a resolution that would permit limited military action in Syria, so long as it would last no longer than 90 days and would not involve the use of ground troops.
While the U.S. Senate had its say on Sept. 5, Roe asked those in attendance to raise their hands if they supported military action in Syria.
No one obliged.
“I see zero,” Roe said. “This is the ninth town hall meeting I’ve done. We’ve had almost no support for going in there.”