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Sasse concerned Yemen vote could empower Iran

November 30, 2018

Sen. Ben Sasse said Thursday he voted against Senate advancement of a resolution to end U.S. military support for the Saudi war effort in Yemen because that could “give Iran even more room to sow further chaos and suffering across the Middle East.”

“Unfortunately, I fear that is the likely real-world consequence that would flow from this resolution as currently drafted,” he said in responding to a request for a statement about his vote against the measure that cleared the Senate on a 63-37 vote.

“The crisis in Yemen right now is a humanitarian nightmare,” Sasse said, and “there are indisputably wicked actors in both Saudi Arabia and Iran.”

“Now that the resolution is on the floor,” Sasse said, “the amendment process next week should be an occasion for the American people to express our anger that the Saudi regime regularly acts lawlessly and with blatant disregard for human life.”

Sen. Deb Fischer, Nebraska’s other Republican senator, also voted against advancement of the resolution, which was supported by 14 GOP senators.

“The resolution the Senate voted on yesterday wasn’t any different than the one that came up on the Senate floor in March,” Fischer spokesperson Brianna Puccini said.

“The situation in Yemen and the nature of the U.S. mission there has not changed since then and neither has Senator Fischer’s position on the measure.”

This week’s Senate vote was viewed as a rebuke to Saudi Arabia in the wake of mounting death, starvation and suffering in Yemen and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s apparent responsibility for the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last month.

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