It is being called a rebuke to Donald Trump after the Senate voted to approve a resolution that would end United States support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen. The 56 to 41 historic vote “underscores the depth of frustration with Saudi Arabia on Capitol Hill,” The Hill reported.
Tensions heightened after the death of U.S.-based Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the resolution, which failed in the Senate in March, was revived and ultimately approved on Thursday.
While the war in Yemen started during the Obama administration, the Trump administration “has moved the U.S. even closer to Saudi Arabia as part of his administration’s broader Middle East policy, which largely focuses on countering Iran,” Vox reported.
The resolution would require that Trump remove all troops within 30 days who are on the ground or “affecting” Yemen unless they are responsible for fighting al Qaeda.
The Senate resolution is a first step in regaining control of war powers from the executive branch and in turn, holds the current administration accountable for the conflict. But the resolution still needs to pass the House and ultimately be approved by Trump, who vowed to veto the resolution when he said in a statement that Riyadh was “a very good ally” and “at this moment” he would stick by Saudi Arabia and the crown prince.
The Senate also passed “a nonbinding resolution Thursday that holds the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman responsible for Khashoggi’s killing,” Vox reported.
“I hope … we send a loud and powerful message by passing this resolution,” Sen. Bernie Sanders, (I-Vt.), said. “That we’re going to bring peace to that country and that the United States Congress is going to reassert its constitutional authority to be the body that makes war not the president.”