WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on Wednesday released a statement following today’s vote to advance the bipartisan joint resolution he introduced with U.S. Senators Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) that would remove U.S. Armed Forces from hostilities between the Saudi-led coalition and the Houthis in Yemen pursuant to the War Powers Act. Earlier today, Murphy delivered remarks on the floor of the U.S. Senate urging his colleagues to support his resolution to end U.S. involvement in this humanitarian crisis.
“The Saudis are our ally, but we don't blindly support our friends when their values and interests conflict with ours. The Saudi war in Yemen has gone off the rails and their disregard for human life has become impossible to ignore. Today's breakthrough vote in the Senate is a signal to the administration that they must quickly reorient their policy toward Saudi Arabia or Congress will do it for them," said Murphy.
"I'm gratified by how much bipartisan support we got for today's motion. Just two years ago, only 27 Senators supported a narrower measure to block a single arms sale. Fast forward to today where a bipartisan group of 63 Senators stood up to Saudi Arabia and the administration to advance legislation that would immediately end U.S. military participation in the war in Yemen,” Murphy continued.
For years, Murphy has been a vocal critic of U.S. Support for the Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen that has led to devastating humanitarian consequences and a security vacuum that has empowered terrorist groups. Murphy has repeatedly expressed concern that U.S. participation in Saudi Arabia’s military actions against Houthi rebels in Yemen threatens our own national security interests.
Last month, after Jamal Khashoggi was killed at the Saudi consulate in Turkey, Murphy reiterated his call for the suspension of military support for the Saudi-led campaign. He echoed his calls in an op-ed in the Washington Post.
In September, Murphy renewed his call to cease support for the Saudi-led campaign following a United Nations report that found continued human rights violations. Earlier this year, Murphy introduced an amendment to the FY 2019 Department of Defense Appropriations bill that would cut off United States’ support for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition’s war in Yemen until the Secretary of Defense certified that the coalition’s air campaign is not violating international law and U.S. policy. Senate Republicans objected to voting on Murphy’s amendment. Murphy introduced similar legislation last year.
The resolution passed by a vote of 63-37.