To: The United States House of Representatives

House: Force a Vote Before Hodeida Assault Pushes Yemen Into Famine

Just Foreign Policy

Force a House vote before General Mattis attacks the Yemeni port of Hodeida, pushing Yemen into famine.

Why is this important?

Efforts to get Members of Congress to invoke their war powers to push back against Trump's threatened escalation of the Saudi war in Yemen - and particularly the threat of attacking the Yemeni port of Hodeida, which would cut off food to millions of people - are drawing increasing attention in the media.

On May 2, the Washington Post reported: "Alarm grows in Washington as Saudi coalition attack on Yemen port appears imminent." The article noted that Reps. Mark Pocan [D-WI] and Justin Amash [R-MI] had threatened to introduce legislation that would seek to "prohibit U.S. involvement in any such assault." [1]

On May 8, James Carden reported: "Congress Is Drawing a ‘Red Line’ Over Trump’s Support for the Saudi War on Yemen." Rep. Pocan told Carden:

"In moments like this, it’s essential that Congress assert its constitutional authority to oversee, debate, and declare war before the US becomes involved in a catastrophic military action overseas." Citing the horrific nature of the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, Pocan said he could "hardly think of anything worse than the US military participating alongside the Saudi military in destroying the lifeline to food for 7 million people already on the brink of starvation." [2]

Carden also reported: several staffers are in the process of "preparing language with legislative counsel to use the War Powers Act of 1973 in order to introduce a privileged resolution to withdraw US forces from the Saudi-led war in Yemen, with Hodeida as a Congressional 'red line.'"

On May 9, John Nichols reported: "There Is Growing Bipartisan Opposition to Trump’s Unauthorized Military Actions." Nichols noted: "Not all Republicans are willing to accept the Trump’s administration’s shredding of the Constitution… Congressman Justin Amash, R-Michigan, has joined Congressman Mark Pocan, D-Wisconsin, in leading a congressional effort to warn the administration that it must consult Congress before lending US support to what members describe as 'a potentially catastrophic' military action by Saudi Arabia in Yemen."

Nichols also reported the Members' threat: “Should the administration remain unresponsive to our repeated inquiries into the nature of US engagement in a potentially catastrophic Saudi attack on Hodeida, we will pursue legislation to explicitly prohibit US involvement in any such an assault.”

Many thought it a foregone conclusion that the Trump Administration would green-light a Saudi-UAE attack on the Yemeni port of Hodeida. But that assault still hasn't happened. Members of Congress can take this threatened attack "off the table" by asserting their war powers.

Urge House Members to demand a vote before Hodeida is attacked by signing our petition.