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Rep. Gabbard Votes to End Support for Saudi Arabia’s Genocidal War in Yemen

February 13, 2019, 6:21 PM HST
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Rep. Tulsi Gabbard voted to pass a historic resolution to end unconstitutional U.S. involvement in Saudi Arabia’s genocidal war in Yemen on Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019. This legislation, introduced and blocked three times in the past, marks the first time the U.S. House of Representatives has backed a resolution to withdraw U.S. forces from a military engagement under the War Powers Act. U.S. support of the Saudi-led war in Yemen has triggered the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, leaving more than 22 million Yemeni civilians in dire need of humanitarian assistance. The resolution passed by a vote of 248-177.

Rep. Gabbard said:

“The United States’ support for Saudi Arabia’s genocidal war in Yemen, with no authorization from Congress, has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of Yemeni civilians. The U.S-Saudi coalition has dropped bombs on children in schools, on people in markets, on families celebrating weddings. They have left millions of Yemeni people on the brink of death from famine, disease, starvation, and a lack of access to clean water, sanitation, and health care. This has created the worst humanitarian crisis in a generation.

“Now, earlier this week, the Trump Administration threatened to veto this critical legislation, should it pass Congress, this legislation that would end U.S support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen, by spreading blatant lies. They said this legislation draws ‘constitutional concerns’ and would ‘affect our ability to prevent the spread of violent extremist organizations.’

“Here’s the truth: first, the war in Yemen is unconstitutional. Congress has not authorized it. Second, Saudi Arabia is not our ally, and U.S continued support for this war in Yemen is strengthening terrorist groups like Al Qaeda. A recent CNN report documented how Saudi Arabia is literally taking the U.S weapons that have been provided to them in this war in Yemen and handing them off to Al Qaeda on the ground in Yemen, the very same terrorist group that attacked us on 9/11—what to speak of the fact that Saudi Arabia is continuing to spend billions of dollars spreading their Wahhabi Salafist ideology that is fueling terrorist organizations like ISIS and Al Qaeda, causing them to grow stronger.

“Congress must take action today. We must reclaim our constitutional responsibility, and pass this legislation to stop supporting Saudi Arabia’s genocidal war in Yemen and strengthening these terrorist groups that threaten us.”

Background: Rep. Gabbard is a leading voice for peace in Congress, advocating against counterproductive, regime-change wars. She has called for ending support for Saudi Arabia, pushed for additional oversight on acquisition and cross-service agreements (Section 1271 of the FY19 NDAA), supported three resolutions in the 115th Congress (H. Con. Res. 81H. Con Res. 138, and H. Con. Res 142) that sought to stop U.S. military participation in Saudi Arabia’s war against the Houthis in Yemen, in addition to bipartisan legislation (H.R. 7082) that would immediately stop all military sales and aid to the government of Saudi Arabia, and more. The congresswoman also led a letter calling on former Speaker Paul Ryan to schedule an immediate vote on a bipartisan resolution to end U.S. support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

Reps. Gabbard and Walter Jones also introduced H. Res 922, which would reclaim Congress’s constitutional right to declare war by:

  • Defining presidential wars not declared by Congress under Article I, section 8, clause 11 (Declare War Clause) as impeachable “high crimes and misdemeanors”
  • Prohibiting the President from perpetuating ongoing wars or supplying war materials, military troops, trainers, or advisers, military intelligence, financial support or their equivalent in association, cooperation, assistance, or common cause without first receiving congressional authorization

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