In a stern rebuke to Donald Trump, a measure created by Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.; Mike Lee, R-Utah; and Chris Murphy, D-Conn to end the war in Yemen has been backed by the Senate, with senators voting 63-37 today to push ahead a motion that would stop the United States from supporting the Saudi-led coalition in their brutal fight in Yemen.
As the BBC reports, despite Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pleading with senators to not back the measure, the Senate has decided that they must investigate whether the war in Yemen is truly worth the support of the United States.
While it was unclear how the Senate would vote on Bernie Sanders’ measure, the recent slaying of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who is also a resident of the US, almost certainly helped to sway senators. While discussing the measure to end support for the Yemen war on Wednesday, US senators also expressed their displeasure when it was discovered that the director of the CIA would not be attending the hearing.
Even Republicans, it would seem, are turning against Saudi Arabia, with Republican Senator Bob Corker, who is head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, explaining, “We have a problem here. We understand that Saudi Arabia is an ally, of sorts, and a semi-important country. We also have a crown prince that’s out of control.”
According to Business Insider, on Wednesday Bernie Sanders told the Senate that it was important to let people know that America will no longer “‘continue to support a catastrophic war led by a despotic regime that has a dangerous, destructive, and irresponsible’ military policies.”
“No more! Enough death. Enough killing. Enough destruction. The time is now to tell Saudi Arabia that we are not committing to partner with them in this horrific crisis.”
Sanders also suggested that what the US is doing in Yemen right now is strictly “unconstitutional,” especially as Congress has at no point discussed the subject. He noted that Congress appears to have “abdicated” its power over war, which is written about in the Constitution, and stated that it was imperative that this change immediately.
The Saudi-led intervention in Yemen, with U.S. support, has killed thousands of civilians. Over 85,000 children have died of starvation.— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) November 27, 2018
Enough is enough. The Senate must vote to end U.S. support for this war. pic.twitter.com/oexdaDZtgB
Bernie Sanders’ measure to end US support for the war in Yemen may have been backed by the Senate, but now Senators will need to discuss the matter further, and, if the Senate chooses to pass the measure in the end, the House will also need to vote for it for the measure to fully pass and become a reality.