The US Senate rejected a draft resolution on Thursday to prevent the sale of offensive weapons, a $300 million sale of rocket launchers to Bahrain because of its participation in the war in Yemen.
Senator Rand Paul forced voting for the resolution in an attempt to defend innocent people, raise the voice against the escalating humanitarian crisis, and send a message to President Donald Trump that the United States is “done with the war in Yemen.”
The resolution, facing a veto threat from the White House, has failed 77-21.
But Paul, who remains close to Trump, is not alone in raising concern about the toll the war is taking in Yemen. In the House, Democratic lawmakers voiced frustration Wednesday after Republican leaders blocked consideration of a resolution from Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., that would direct the president to end the U.S. military’s support of Saudi-led forces within 30 days, and until Congress authorizes such support.
Paul’s effort followed his pledge to block a pending U.S. arm sales to Saudi Arabia, saying he has the votes to stop it. A previous effort against Saudi arm sales last year fell just a few votes short.
On Thursday, the White House issued a veto threat against the Bahrain resolution, saying the sales of 120 Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System pods and 110 Army Tactical Missile System pods are intended for the defense of Bahrain, which is home to various U.S. military forces.
“The utilization of this ground-based system would enhance Bahrain’s ability to protect itself against threats to territorial sovereignty, particularly from Iran,” the White House wrote.