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RELEASE: Following Yemen WPR House Passage Khanna requests meeting to discuss with President Trump

April 5, 2019
Press Release

Washington, DC – Yesterday, U.S. Representative Ro Khanna (D-CA) sent a  bipartisan, bicameral letter to President Donald Trump urging him to sign into law Senate Joint Resolution 7, which invokes the War Powers Act of 1973 to end unauthorized U.S. military participation in the Saudi-led coalition’s armed conflict against Yemen’s Houthi forces. In the letter he also formally requests a meeting to discuss the situation.

“We believe that by signing this historic legislation to terminate an unconstitutional war that predates your presidency, you will set a new precedent for cooperation with both chambers of Congress to overcome such entrenched opposition to foreign-policy restraint,” the letter reads. “We respectfully ask for a meeting with you at your earliest convenience to discuss this legislation and the promising opportunities that can emerge from its passage.”

“Famine is not an inevitability – it can and it must be prevented before it gets any worse,” said Rep. Ro Khanna. “This is a letter sent in good faith, and I’m hopeful the President recognizes that this is a humanitarian issue, like he has done in Syria and Afghanistan, rather than a political one.”

“For two years, we have been clear: ending the war, famine, and disease afflicting Yemen is not a partisan issue,” said Rep. Mark Pocan. “I’m hopeful that the President will meet with our bipartisan group, sign this bill into law, and make history. We believe that a partnership with the White House to end Yemen’s humanitarian catastrophe could set the stage for drawing down the rest of our endless wars.” 

You can read the letter here or below:

April 4, 2019

 

The Honorable Donald Trump
President
United States of America
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500-0003

 

Dear Mr. President: 

As a bipartisan, bicameral group of lawmakers, we respectfully ask you to sign into law Senate Joint Resolution 7, which invokes the War Powers Act of 1973 to end unauthorized U.S. military participation in the Saudi-led coalition’s armed conflict against Yemen’s Houthi forces, initiated in 2015 by the Obama Administration.

The passage of this landmark legislation would help advance the aims of your December 6, 2017 directive, which requested that Saudi Arabia “completely allow food, fuel, water, and medicine to reach the Yemeni people who desperately need it.” Unfortunately, the Saudi-led coalition’s imposition of an air-land-and-sea blockade as part of its war against Yemen’s Houthis has continued to prevent the unimpeded distribution of these vital commodities, contributing to the suffering and death of vast numbers of civilians throughout the country.

Senate Joint Resolution 7 codifies your administration’s November 2018 decision to halt midair refueling operations for Saudi-led coalition airstrikes, and terminates other unauthorized hostilities initiated by the Obama Administration, such as targeting assistance. The legislation under your consideration for presidential signature has no bearing on U.S. weapons sales to the Saudi Kingdom.

We believe the signing of this bill into law would send a powerful signal to the Saudi-led coalition to bring the four-year-old war to a close, thereby ending the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, which has pushed 10 million Yemenis to the brink of famine. 

Both during your campaign and presidency, you have spoken out against a bipartisan tendency to be drawn into costly and never-ending conflicts across the globe and its devastating impacts for American service members and taxpayers. You have also expressed public frustration over the resistance by some of your subordinates within the Executive Branch to your efforts to challenge this consensus.

We believe that by signing this historic legislation to terminate an unconstitutional war that predates your presidency, you will set a new precedent for cooperation with both chambers of Congress to overcome such entrenched opposition to foreign-policy restraint. We also hope that such a partnership between the President and Congress to end U.S. involvement in the Saudi-led coalition’s war against Yemen’s Houthis can serve as a bipartisan springboard to achieve our shared interest in responsibly drawing down needless conflicts throughout the world, such as ongoing U.S. military interventions in Afghanistan and Syria.

We respectfully ask for a meeting with you at your earliest convenience to discuss this legislation and the promising opportunities that can emerge from its passage.

Sincerely,

 

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About the Office

Congressman Khanna represents the 17th District of California, which covers communities in Silicon Valley. Visit his website at khanna.house.gov. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @RepRoKhanna.