(NBC News) Desperate for the ok of Congress, President Obama brought leaders to the White House today to sell his plan for a brief U.S. attack on Syria's government and military.
"What we are envisioning is something limited. It is something proportional. It will degrade Assad's capabilities and at the same time we have broader strategy that will allow us to upgrade the capabilities of the opposition," the President said.
That plan has won over republican House Speaker John Boehner.
"This is something that the United States as a country needs to do, said the House Speaker.
Democratic leaders agreed.
For some, like democratic congressman Eliot Engel of New York, images of suffering and dead children were enough of a reason to support U.S. action.
"I will always remember those pictures of those poor children foaming at the mouth and then dying," said Engel.
"If we do nothing now and allow this to go on it sends a message that chemical weapons then can be used," said Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger of Maryland.
Back on Capitol Hill, senators heard from Secretary of State Kerry and Defense Secretary Hagel.
But many in both parties are undecided; including republican Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee.
"They understand the consequences that could exist with action, but they also understand the consequences that could occur with inaction," said Corker.
Senator James Risch of Idaho is also undecided.
"And i still keep hearing that the objective is, well we have to do something. That's not good enough for me at this point," Risch said.
Lawmakers are getting reassurance from GOP hawks and the President that this is not Iraq or Afghanistan, but many fear that U.S intervention could ultimately lead to a new U.S. war in the Middle East.
-- Steve Handelsman, NBC News, reports