The Senate voted on Tuesday not to debate a bill that would have cut off U.S. military support for the Saudi-led coalition that has been waging war in Yemen for the past three years by a vote of 55–44, with 10 Democrats joining with Republicans in voting to continue supporting the war.
The bill was sponsored by Senator Bernie Sanders and cosponsored by Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Chris Murphy (D-CT). But Republicans in the Senate, along with their Democratic allies, shot down the bill before it could even be brought to a vote.
Senate leaders, notably top Senate Foreign Relations Committee figures Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), said the proposal was too hasty and should return to committee, and the Trump administration invested heavily in convincing lawmakers it would unwisely damage the American partnership with the Saudis.
The Democrats who voted against the resolution are:
- Senator Chris Coons (Delaware)
- Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (Nevada)
- Senator Joe Donnelly (Indiana)
- Senator Heidi Heitkamp (North Dakota)
- Senator Doug Jones (Alabama)
- Senator Joe Manchin (West Virginia)
- Senator Bob Menendez (New Jersey)
- Senator Bill Nelson (Florida)
- Senator Jack Reed (Rhode Island)
- Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (Rhode Island)
In the ongoing proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran, the U.S. has sided with Saudi Arabia. Last summer, President Donald Trump signed a multi-billion dollar arms deal with the country. These 10 hawkish Democrats made clear that they don’t think the United States’ continued role financing Saudi Arabia’s campaign in Yemen is worth debating.
Perhaps coincidentally, Trump also met with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the White House yesterday, where the president praised the ongoing arms deals and said he and bin Salman are “very good friends.”
“A lot of bad things are happening in Iran,” Trump said at the meeting.
And so we march onward, toward another forever war in the Middle East.