Rep. Ted DeutchTheodore (Ted) Eliot DeutchHouse Democrats urge Trump to end deportations of Iraqis after diabetic man's death House conservatives call for ethics probe into Joaquin Castro tweet Democratic leaders seek to have it both ways on impeachment MORE (D-Fla.) gave a fiery floor speech Thursday ripping Republicans for seeking to “drive a wedge” into the Democratic caucus with a motion to amend legislation cutting off support for Saudi Arabia in the Yemen civil war.

The GOP measure sought to add language rejecting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and anti-Semitism to the Yemen measure.

A number of Democrats deeply oppose the BDS movement, but others see support for it as a matter of free speech.

ADVERTISEMENT

Deutch, who is Jewish, said he opposed the BDS movement, but accused Republicans of seeking to divide Democrats united in support for cutting of military aid to Saudi Arabia in its intervention in Yemen’s civil war.

“I strongly condemn the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, economic warfare against the state of Israel, and there is no one in this chamber, no one, who would question my commitment to opposing BDS or rejecting anti-Semitism or supporting our ally Israel,” he said.  

“But I also strongly reject, I strongly reject, I strongly reject what my colleagues are doing here today,” he said, to applause from Democratic lawmakers in the chamber.

“This is not a [motion] about BDS. We’ve seen this play out before the last time this resolution came up,” he said. “My colleagues are trying to block us from standing in support of our human rights and American values to condemn what's happening there — that's what this is about.”

Republicans have used several “motion to recommit” measures to change pieces of Democratic legislation.

Thursday’s GOP measure ultimately failed in a 194-228 vote, with just five Democrats voting with Republicans.

The legislation to cut off support to Saudi Arabia passed 247-175, with 16 Republicans siding with Democrats.