Background on the current humanitarian crisis
The U.S. has been aiding Saudi Arabia in a war in Yemen in which many civilians are being harmed. According to a June letter from many peace and justice advocacy groups, "As a result of the war, roughly 14 million people in Yemen are at risk of famine. Aid agencies have described Yemen as worst place in the world to be a child, with the conflict claiming the lives of at least 85,000 children under the age of five from hunger and disease. More than 1 million people have been infected with cholera and an alarming 10,000 new cases arise each week. The Saudi and UAE coalition has imposed a de-facto blockade on Yemen, which has impeded the flow of food, fuel, and medicine, pushing prices of essential goods out of reach for millions of Yemenis."
When asking questions of presidential candidates
Talking points and questions on the Saudi-UAE coalition's war in Yemen: https://www.fcnl.org/updates/45-groups-urge-congress-to-end-u-s-support-for-war-in-yemen-2106
- Do you support cutting Defense funding for U.S. participation in the Saudi-UAE coalition's war in Yemen? This includes any form of assistance including supplies, intelligence sharing, or logistical support to Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates that would be targeted toward Yemen.
- Follow-up question if a candidate supports the sale of arms to the Saudi-UAE coalition for war on Yemen:
Considering that aid agencies describe Yemen as the worst place in the world to be a child, where roughly 14 million people are at risk of famine, and the Saudi and UAE coalition has imposed a de-facto blockade on Yemen, impeding the flow of food, fuel, and medicine, how does that sit with your own personal moral compass?
Question for Democratic candidates based on the state party’s platform: https://iowademocrats.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2018/09/2018-IDP-Platform.pdf page 27
As you may know, the Iowa Democratic Party’s official platform opposes Saudi involvement in Yemen. What’s your stance on Saudi involvement in Yemen, and if you disagree with the Iowa Democratic Party, what’s your rationale?
Candidate support for Yemen legislation
The following presidential candidates who are current or recent members of Congress were cosponsors of a 2019 bill (or a 2018 bill that wasn’t brought to vote) asking for removal of U.S. Armed Forces from hostilities in Yemen:
- Sen. Bernie Sanders (introduced bill)
- Sen. Amy Klobuchar
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren
- Sen. Cory Booker
- Sen. Kamala Harris
- Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
- Rep. Seth Moulton
- Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
- (former) Rep. Beto O’Rourke (2018)
Other candidates who are current or recent members of Congress, and their voting records:
Rep. Eric Swalwell. Did not sponsor 2018 Yemen bill, but voted for it.
Rep. Tim Ryan. Did not sponsor 2019 Yemen bill and was not present for the vote.
(former) Rep. John Delaney. Did not sponsor 2018 Yemen bill.