Tags: Trump Administration | senate | foreign | relations | committee | arms | sales

Report: Senate Panel Advances Bill to Restrict WH Power on Emergency Sales

bob menendez speaks during a campaign rally
Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J. (Julio Cortez/AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 25 June 2019 05:34 PM

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee reportedly advanced a bill Tuesday to restrict the president's ability to approve emergency sales without a congressional review period.

It passed by voice vote with some Republicans opposing it, The Hill reported.

The action comes in the wake of President Donald Trump's decision to use the emergency provision of American arms control laws to jam through 22 arms sales to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf allies and sidestep the typical congressional review.

"This bipartisan bill directly addresses these abuses by restricting these emergency authorities to only our closest security treaty allies and security partner countries," said ranking member and bill sponsor Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., The Hill reported.

"These changes do not affect the 22 sales, which we dealt with by the resolutions of disapproval last week. But it will hopefully prevent us being faced with future uses of this nature, regardless of whether a Republican or a Democrat is occupying the White House."

The bill faces an uphill climb to get a floor vote without the support of committee chairman Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, and the GOP leadership, The Hill reported.

Last week, the Senate approved resolutions to block the arms deals, and the House is expected to follow suit, The Hill reported. Trump is expected to veto the resolutions.

The Hill noted lawmakers in both parties oppose the arms sales to Saudi Arabia over its conduct in the Yemen civil war, and the brutal slaying of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Risch said he opposed the Menendez bill, though he said he "understand[s] the motivation," The Hill reported.

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A bill to restrict the president's ability to approve emergency sales without a congressional review period was advanced by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, according to The Hill.
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2019-34-25
Tuesday, 25 June 2019 05:34 PM
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