With U.S. military action in Iraq under way, some anti-war House Democrats sought Thursday to continue a debate within their party on more peaceful ways to disarm Saddam Hussein.

However, freshman Rep. Jim Marshall of Georgia objected to convening a Democratic caucus to debate the war so soon after it started.

"The time for debate is past," Marshall said, interrupting a news conference called by Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, who gathered the 50 signatures necessary to convene the caucus on short notice.

"Even in the face of war, voices for peace and reconciliation can be raised," Jackson Lee said.

She had hoped to convene a caucus meeting Thursday evening, but under party rules, an objection from any member can delay a meeting for up to five days.