House GOP leaders pushed a measure through their chamber Wednesday that will make it tougher for President Trump’s critics to cut off U.S. assistance to the Saudi government in its proxy war in Yemen.
The new rules adopted on a 206-203 vote will prevent rank-and-file lawmakers from forcing a vote on a resolution to curtail the Yemen efforts. The rules were tacked onto an unrelated resolution laying out the terms of floor debate for a farm bill.
The maneuver angered Democrats who had been hoping to wrangle a vote under the War Powers Resolution to cancel the U.S. military assistance to the Saudi government after revelations that the regime killed Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
“You wonder why people are frustrated with Congress, why they think Congress lacks common sense,” said Rep. Ro Khanna, California Democrat. “It’s because no one understands why you would have a vote on a farm bill and you would tie it to a vote on war and peace.”
The House vote came just minutes before the Senate held a vote to begin debating its own Yemen restrictions measure.
The Trump administration is opposed to having its hands tied on U.S. efforts in Yemen, and GOP leaders were moving to shore up that position with Wednesday’s vote.