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Congress Alert

Showdown: Senate 'Block Saudi Weapons Sale' Vote Tomorrow


The Senate is expected to vote as early as tomorrow (Tuesday) afternoon on a measure to disapprove of President Trump's announced deal to transfer half a billion dollars worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia. The bipartisan measure, introduced by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), could lead to the Senate blocking the massive weapons sale, striking a serious blow to what the President touted as a major achievement of his first foreign trip last month.

Paul has cited Saudi Arabia's dismal human rights record and aggressive war on Yemen as reasons to oppose the arms deal. 

The move to block the arms transfer got a shot in the arm today, when Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer announced this afternoon that he would back the move.

Sen. Paul attempted to block a similar deal with Saudi Arabia last year under President Obama, but that move failed by a vote of 71-27. The steady exodus of Senate Democrats to the Paul position suggests this year's attempt will be far closer. Politics may well be at play here, as the chance to hand a stinging defeat to the president may well prove irresistible to Senators like Schuman who opposed blocking sales under President Obama. 

Paul's position opposing the sale is the correct one and should be supported by all Americans concerned over Saudi aggression, support for terrorism, and export of jihadist ideologies worldwide. Senators will likely be hearing from their constituents in advance of tomorrow's expected vote on the measure.
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