The House should take a careful look at controversial legislation that would allow 9/11 victims to sue the Saudi Arabian government for any role it might have played in the terrorist attacks, Speaker Paul RyanPaul RyanTrump to meet Thursday with House Freedom Caucus members Healthcare fight pits Trump against Club for Growth High drama for ObamaCare vote MORE (R-Wis.) said Tuesday.
That way, lawmakers can ensure the U.S. government is not jeopardizing its relationship with an important ally, he said.
The Speaker recently led a congressional delegation to the Middle East but said the legislation never came up during his meetings with King Salman and other top Saudi officials in Riyadh.
“I think we need to look at it,” Ryan told reporters at a news conference. “I think we need to review it to make sure we are not making mistakes with our allies and that we’re not catching people in this that shouldn’t be caught up in this.”
The Saudi government is vehemently opposed to the bipartisan legislation, which has been introduced in both the House and Senate. Top officials from the country have threatened to sell off billions of dollars in U.S. assets if Congress takes up and passes the bill, The New York Times reported.
The international spat comes just as Obama is set to visit Saudi Arabia on Wednesday.
Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) introduced a House version of the bill, which is backed by several of his New York colleagues. A companion bill in the Senate was authored by New York Democrat Charles SchumerCharles SchumerFreedom Caucus, Trump reach 'agreement in principle' on healthcare Gorsuch hearings: A referendum on Originalism and corporate power We must act now and pass the American Health Care Act MORE and Republican Whip John CornynJohn CornynGOP senator: 'We still need to figure out what the president was talking about' on wiretapping Live coverage: Day two of Supreme Court nominee hearing Repeal of Obama drilling rule stalls in the Senate MORE of Texas. GOP presidential hopeful Ted CruzTed CruzTrump defends several unsubstantiated claims in interview Budowsky: Trump’s war against truth Five takeaways from Labor pick’s confirmation hearing MORE, the junior senator from Texas, has signed on as well.
Former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonObama and Trump haven’t talked since inauguration Perez, Ellison start multistate ‘turnaround tour’ for Dems Watergate reporter on Russia: 'I’ve been saying for a while there’s a coverup going on' MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersHealthcare fight pits Trump against Club for Growth Perez, Ellison start multistate ‘turnaround tour’ for Dems Overnight Finance: US preps cases linking North Korea to Fed heist | GOP chair says Dodd-Frank a 2017 priority | Chamber pushes lawmakers on Trump's trade pick | Labor nominee faces Senate MORE (I-Vt.), who are competing for the Democratic presidential nomination, both support the legislation.