Yemen resolution picks up crucial support in Senate

Yemen resolution picks up crucial support in Senate
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A resolution that would force President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE to end U.S. support for Saudi Arabia's military actions in Yemen is picking up support even after top administration officials lobbied against the measure during a closed-door briefing. 

Multiple senators who previously voted against the same resolution in March emerged from the meeting saying they would support taking it up this time, underscoring the growing frustration with the Saudi government on Capitol Hill. 

Sen. Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsSenate Dem calls on Trump to apologize for attacks on McCain Sixteen years later, let's finally heed the call of the 9/11 Commission  Senate Dems introduce bill demanding report on Khashoggi killing MORE (D-Del.) said he would support the resolution, saying he was dissatisfied by the briefing and calling it a "significant mistake" not to send CIA Director Gina Haspel.

"I think it is more important that the United States continue to demonstrate to the world that we value a free press, that we hold our close allies to high standards and that we will continue to stand for the basic values that define the United States," Coons said. 

Sens. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeSchumer to introduce bill naming Senate office building after McCain amid Trump uproar Trump keeps tight grip on GOP McSally to back Trump on emergency declaration MORE (R-Ariz.), Catherine Cortez MastoCatherine Marie Cortez MastoThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Manafort sentenced to total of 7.5 years in prison Dems put spotlight on diversity in tech Hillicon Valley: Google workers join lawmakers against forced arbitration | Cohen to return before House Intel next week | Huawei pleads not guilty to theft allegations | New bill would ban ad targeting by race MORE (D-Nev.) and Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Manafort sentenced to total of 7.5 years in prison Acting Defense chief calls Graham an 'ally' after tense exchange William Barr is right man for the times MORE (D-N.J.) also said they would vote in favor of the resolution. Like Coons, they each voted to table the same resolution in March.

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Menendez called Haspel's absence a "cover-up" and "outrageous," arguing the chamber was being stonewalled. 

"I heard nothing convincing as it relates to why we would not proceed with the Sanders-Lee and others resolution," he said, referring to Sens. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersWarren, Klobuchar call on FTC to curtail use of non-compete clauses RNC says it raised .6 million in February Pollster says 'it's certainly not looking good' for Trump ahead of 2020 MORE (I-Vt.) and Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeStop asking parents to sacrifice Social Security benefits for paid family leave The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump hits media over New Zealand coverage GOP moves to rein in president's emergency powers MORE (R-Utah), two sponsors of the bill. 

The growing support for the resolution is a blow to the administration, which has launched an eleventh-hour effort to squash the resolution. 

Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisPentagon watchdog probing whether acting chief boosted Boeing Overnight Defense: Judge says Trump can't implement transgender policy | Trump floats admitting Brazil to NATO | Mattis returning to Stanford Mattis returning to Stanford months after Pentagon resignation MORE and Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoPompeo presses for resolution to Gulf dispute The Hill's Morning Report - Trump, Dems put manufacturing sector in 2020 spotlight State Department blocks reporters from Pompeo briefing with faith-based media: report MORE spoke with senators during a briefing Wednesday, warning that if the Senate moved forward with the resolution it would undercut negotiations with Saudi Arabia. 

"I know all too well the difficulty in reconciling human aspirations with war's grim reality; but I also recognize that we cannot limit civilian casualties or advance the peace effort commencing early next month in Sweden by disengaging," Mattis said, according to prepared remarks.

The resolution would require Trump to pull all troops in or “affecting” Yemen within 30 days. It’s expected to get an initial vote as soon as Wednesday afternoon. 

Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyThe fear of colorectal cancer as a springboard for change Dems shift strategy for securing gun violence research funds The Hill's 12:30 Report: O'Rourke jumps into 2020 fray MORE (D-Conn.), another sponsor of the resolution, stopped short of predicting success but argued the administration’s briefing didn’t win over any concerned senators. 

"I'm more confident after that briefing that we have the votes," Murphy told reporters.

The same resolution fell six votes short in March. The support coming out of the briefing, as well as Sen. Jack ReedJohn (Jack) Francis ReedOvernight Defense: Pentagon lists construction projects at risk from emergency declaration | Officials deny report on leaving 1,000 troops in Syria | Spy budget request nears B Pentagon sends Congress list of projects that could lose funds to Trump's emergency declaration Overnight Defense: Senate rejects border emergency in rebuke to Trump | Acting Pentagon chief grilled on wall funding | Warren confronts chief over war fund budget MORE’s (D-R.I.) announcement on Tuesday night that he will support the bill puts the resolution on the precipice of having enough votes to at least be brought up on the floor.

Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerTrump keeps tight grip on GOP Brexit and exit: A transatlantic comparison Sasse’s jabs at Trump spark talk of primary challenger MORE (R-Tenn.), the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman, predicted that, absent action from the administration, the Senate would vote to take up the resolution in part because it's amendable, meaning senators could change it on the Senate floor.

"The Yemen resolution is amendable. so the first vote is just to get on it," he told reporters. "We're very likely to support a vehicle that allows us to somehow or another address this."