Senate's Yemen war measure rebukes Trump, rewards Murphy

Evarado Alatorre
Marcha 14, 2019

The Senate voted 54-46 today to end USA support for the Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels, the third time Congress has done so since December.

The bipartisan vote was 54 to 46, and is a rebuke to President Donald Trump's support of Saudi Arabia and its leader despite recent tensions. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., left, and Sen. They were: Lee, Susan Collins of Maine, Steve Daines of Montana, Jerry Moran of Kansas, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Todd Young of Indiana.

Opponents argued that the War Powers Resolution does not apply because the not directly involved in combat in Yemen.

"The bottom line is the United States should not be supporting a catastrophic war led by a despotic regime with a unsafe and irresponsible foreign policy", Mr. Sanders said.

The Senate passed a similar resolution previous year in the wake of the Khashoggi murder, but it did not receive a vote in the GOP-led House.

Now the U.S. House is in Democratic hands and Blumenthal urged the chamber to "take up and pass this resolution so we can issue a final condemnation of United States' support for this war - once and for all".

Resolution opponents argued that support for the Saudi-led coalition is not an appropriate use of the war powers act limiting the president's ability to send troops into action, because USA forces are not actively engaged in fighting.

In its statement threatening a veto, the White House argued the premise of the resolution is flawed and that it would undermine the fight against extremism.

Trump's support for Saudi Arabia has been a point of tension with Congress since the killing of USA -based journalist Jamal Khashoggi past year.

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Trump has held back on criticizing Saudi Arabia, calling them an important strategic ally and counterbalance to Iran in the region.

The Senate unanimously agreed to retain similar language today by voice vote with an amendment from Sen.

On Thursday, the Senate is expected to vote on a resolution - already passed by the House - to reverse Trump's emergency declaration on border security, after the president went around Congress in a bid to secure more funding for his wall between the United States and Mexico. "Concerns about Saudi human rights issues should be addressed with the administration and with Saudi officials".

McConnell argued that the Yemen resolution would "not enhance America's diplomatic leverage" and would make it more hard for the help end the conflict in Yemen and minimize civilian casualties.

His legislation calls for an end to a USA role in hostilities in Yemen, a nation of almost 30 million people at the tip of the Arabian Peninsula, where fighting between the Saudi-backed government and the Houthi rebel movement, backed by Iran, has been raging for four years.

"Peace envoys are telling us they want deeper USA engagement in this situation", Risch said in a statement following the vote.

If the legislation passes the House, it would be the first time lawmakers have invoked the decades-old War Powers Resolution to halt American military involvement in a foreign conflict.

The United Nations has called it the world's worst humanitarian catastrophe.

'We are made weaker in the eyes of the world when we willingly participate in war crimes, when we allow our partners to engage in the slaughter of innocents, ' Murphy said.

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