Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), a military combat veteran, met with President-elect Donald Trump to discuss foreign policy issues, including President Barack Obama’s war against the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) in Syria, which she considers illegal.
Breaking with leaders of her own party, the Democrat congresswoman, one of the first two female combat veterans to serve as a U.S. lawmaker, has been a vocal critic of Obama’s efforts against ISIS, echoing many GOP members of Congress.
“While the rules of political expediency would say I should have refused to meet with President-elect Trump, I never have and never will play politics with American and Syrian lives,” the congresswoman said in a statement after the meeting Monday.
“Let me be clear, I will never allow partisanship to undermine our national security when the lives of countless people lay in the balance,” Gabbard concluded, after noting, “I will continue to seek common ground to deliver results that best serve all Americans, as I have tried to do during my time in Congress.”
Gabbard, a member of the House committees on armed services and foreign affairs, is under consideration by the incoming Republican Trump administration for United Nations ambassador, as well as positions within the Pentagon and the Department of State, reports CNN, citing an unnamed source.
Gabbard, who continues her service in the U.S. military as a major in the Army National Guard, noted that she would not hesitate to voice disagreement with the next commander-in-chief on certain issues.
“Where I disagree with President-elect Trump on issues, I will not hesitate to express that disagreement,” she declared. “However, I believe we can disagree, even strongly, but still come together on issues that matter to the American people and affect their daily lives. We cannot allow continued divisiveness to destroy our country.”
“President-elect Trump and I had a frank and positive conversation in which we discussed a variety of foreign policy issues in depth,” Maj. Gabbard continued.
On Monday, Kellyanne Conway told reporters that Trump and Gabbard have “a lot of common ground” and both understand “the country very well.”
“There’s a recognition that there’s a big country out there with lots of voters that feel disaffected from their party, the Democrats,” added Conway.
Besides America’s ongoing efforts against ISIS, Gabbard also discussed al Qaeda, which has continued to grow, primarily in Syria and Yemen, while the Obama administration has primarily focused on the Islamic State.
I shared with him my grave concerns that escalating the war in Syria by implementing a so-called no fly/safe zone would be disastrous for the Syrian people, our country, and the world
We discussed my bill to end our country’s illegal war to overthrow the Syrian government, and the need to focus our precious resources on rebuilding our own country, and on defeating al-Qaeda, ISIS, and other terrorist groups who pose a threat to the American people.
The Democrat congresswoman is under consideration by the incoming Republican Trump administration for United Nations ambassador as well as positions within the Pentagon and the Department of State, reports CNN.
In February, she resigned from her post in the Democratic National Committee to endorse Vermont Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders in his bid against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination.
She supported Sanders through the Democratic convention, only announcing her support for Clinton days after her party gave her the nomination.
Rep. Gabbard did not mention the alleged appointment considerations by the Trump administration in the statement issued after she met with the president-elect.
She did note that the meeting came at Trump’s request.
“President-elect Trump asked me to meet with him about our current policies regarding Syria, our fight against terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS, as well as other foreign policy challenges we face,” she said.
Gabbard added, “I felt it important to take the opportunity to meet with the President-elect now before the drumbeats of war that neocons have been beating drag us into an escalation of the war to overthrow the Syrian government…”
Bannon is Breitbart News’ former chairman.