Pelosi Says House Intends To Block Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia

Politics WJ Wire

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday the House plans to block President Donald Trump’s emergency arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

“There will be a vote to remove any authority to make those sales to Saudi Arabia,” Pelosi said in an interview with CNN reporter Fareed Zakaria Thursday, The Hill reported.

“This is something that we will fight, and we’ll have bipartisan support to fight.”

The Trump administration approved the push for 22 arms sales to Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates under the Arms Export Control Act in May.

The law allows the. president to control the “export of defense articles and services.”

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The move is without a congressional review period, according to The Hill.

Pelosi added that Trump’s arms deal “includes nuclear technology that he is transferring to Saudi Arabia.”

The Trump administration supported the emergency move because of increasing tensions with Iran, The Hill reported.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused Iran of the “unprovoked” blasts of two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman Thursday.

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“These sales and the associated emergency certification are intended to address the military need of our partners in the face of an urgent regional threat posed by Iran; promote the vitality of our bilateral relationships by reassuring our partners; and preserve strategic advantage against near-peer competitors,” Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs R. Clarke Cooper said in testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on  Wednesday.

House Democrats introduced a bipartisan legislation to reverse the Trump administration’s decision Wednesday, according to a news statement from the Committee on Foreign Affairs.

“This legislation sends a strong signal that we will not tolerate the Trump administration’s blatant abuse of power,” Democratic California Rep. Ted Lieu — a vocal Trump critic — said in the news statement.

On Tuesday, 47 Democrats and four Republican lawmakers voted against the Trump administration’s effort, giving the effort to block the sales a majority in the upper chamber, The Hill reported.

However, The Hill noted that Democrats in the House and Senate are unlikely to be able to round up the two-thirds majorities needed in both houses of Congress to override an almost certain Trump veto of the bill.

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Those against the arms sales believe U.S.-Saudi relations have worsened because of Saudi Arabia involvement in the Yemen civil war and Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi’s death in 2018, according to The Hill.

Pelosi’s team did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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