foreign policy

Do you support ending military and intelligence assistance for Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen?

Yes

Yes

Michael Bennet

U.S. senator, Colorado

Bennet “believes the next administration must hold Saudi Arabia accountable,“ a Bennet spokesperson told The Post. He “voted to limit U.S. military support to the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen and against the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia multiple times due, in part, to human rights concerns in the war in Yemen. [Bennet] believes the administration and regional powers should do more to press all parties to come to a political settlement.” Bennet voted for a Senate resolution in opposition to U.S. military involvement in Yemen in early 2019.

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Michael Bennet
Bennet

Joe Biden

Former vice president

“I would end U.S. support for the disastrous Saudi-led war in Yemen and order a reassessment of our relationship with Saudi Arabia,” Biden told The Post. “It is past time to restore a sense of balance, perspective and fidelity to our values in our relationships in the Middle East. President Trump has issued Saudi Arabia a dangerous blank check. Saudi Arabia has used it to extend a war in Yemen that has created the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, pursue reckless foreign policy fights and repress its own people. America’s priorities in the Middle East should be set in Washington, not Riyadh.”

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Joe Biden
Biden

Cory Booker

U.S. senator, New Jersey

“As president, I would end U.S. logistical and other support for the Saudi war in Yemen, and have co-sponsored legislation in the Senate that would end the American role in the war. Our involvement in Yemen has only deepened the conflict and enabled a humanitarian tragedy where thousands have died and over 22 million people need assistance. We must end this war,” Booker told The Post.

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Cory Booker
Booker

Steve Bullock

Governor, Montana

“I would end our support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen, which has become a human rights catastrophe,” Bullock told The Post.

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Steve Bullock
Bullock

Pete Buttigieg

Mayor, South Bend, Ind.

“Yes. The United States must stop supporting the Saudi-led campaign in Yemen, which has killed thousands of civilians,” Buttigieg told The Post. “As president, I would suspend all offensive arms sales that could be used in that war, including spare parts for U.S.-made aircraft. However, we must be pragmatic about intelligence-sharing. Totally stopping such cooperation could hinder our ability to detect and thwart threats emanating from Yemen, including from the regional al-Qaeda affiliate.”

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Pete Buttigieg
Buttigieg

Bill de Blasio (Dropped out)

Mayor, New York City

Mar. 13: “Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen is brutal and immoral — and we've been complicit. I applaud the Senate for taking a stand.”

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Bill de Blasio
de Blasio

John Delaney

Former U.S. representative, Maryland

“I support ending U.S. military support to Saudi Arabia for the purpose of carrying out their military operations in Yemen,” Delaney told the Council on Foreign Relations. “While I would not completely cut ties and would continue to do essential business with the country, I would not receive any Saudi official in the White House, and I would not extend high-level U.S. official visits to Saudi Arabia. I would impress upon Saudi officials the importance of respecting human rights at home and abroad.”

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John Delaney
Delaney

Tulsi Gabbard

U.S. representative, Hawaii

“Yes. The United States must end all support for Saudi Arabia’s genocidal war in Yemen (including ending weapons sales) that has caused the deaths of tens of thousands, starvation of millions and the worst humanitarian crisis in a generation,” Gabbard told The Post. “This is an illegal war that has never been authorized by Congress, therefore violating Article 1 of the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution.” She co-sponsored a resolution in opposition to U.S. military involvement in Yemen in early 2019.

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Tulsi Gabbard
Gabbard

Kamala D. Harris

U.S. senator, California

“First of all, we need to end U.S. support for the catastrophic Saudi-led war in Yemen, which has driven the world’s worst humanitarian crisis,” Harris told the Council on Foreign Relations. “The United States and Saudi Arabia still have mutual areas of interest, such as counterterrorism, where the Saudis have been strong partners. And we should continue to coordinate on that front. But we need to fundamentally reevaluate our relationship with Saudi Arabia, using our leverage to stand up for American values and interests.” Harris co-sponsored a resolution in opposition to U.S. military involvement in Yemen in early 2019.

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Kamala Harris
Harris

Amy Klobuchar

U.S. senator, Minnesota

Klobuchar supports ending military and intelligence assistance for Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen, she told The Post. She co-sponsored a resolution in opposition to U.S. military involvement in Yemen in early 2019.

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Amy Klobuchar
Klobuchar

Beto O'Rourke

Former U.S. representative, Texas

“As president, I will call for an end to the repression of women’s rights activists, impose Global Magnitsky Act sanctions on those responsible for Jamal Khashoggi’s murder, respond to the clearly articulated desire of the American people to end U.S. involvement in the war in Yemen, and halt arms sales to the kingdom until it commits to a cessation of hostilities and peace negotiations,” O'Rourke told the Council on Foreign Relations.

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Beto O'Rourke
O'Rourke

Tim Ryan

U.S. representative, Ohio

“Yes, the war in Yemen is a humanitarian catastrophe that is hindering our international fight against terrorism and undercutting our need for diplomatic pragmatism,” Ryan told The Post. “We need to stop logistical and fiscal support to Saudi Arabia immediately. We cannot continue to be complicit in the killing of innocents and we cannot be tied to crimes of the Saudi government. They’re our allies and I will support their interests, but I cannot support their war in Yemen.” He did not vote on a House resolution in opposition to U.S. military involvement in Yemen in early 2019.

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Tim Ryan
Ryan

Bernie Sanders

U.S. senator, Vermont

“Yes. Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen has created the world’s largest humanitarian catastrophe. U.S. support for that war is unconstitutional and illegal, which is why I introduced and passed, for the first time in history, a War Powers Resolution calling for an end to that support,” Sanders told The Post. “Rather than backing the Saudi intervention, the United States should exert its influence to support a political agreement ending the war.”

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Bernie Sanders
Sanders

Joe Sestak

Former U.S. representative, Pennsylvania

Sestak supports ending military and intelligence assistance for Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen, he told The Post.

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Joe Sestak
Sestak

Elizabeth Warren

U.S. senator, Massachusetts

“Yes. I’ve been a leader in the fight to end all U.S. military assistance for the Saudi-led effort in Yemen. I got the Pentagon to admit that the U.S. was tracking results of operations it supported, and I’ve fought to prevent civilian casualties and alleviate the humanitarian crisis on the ground,” Warren told The Post. “It’s time to reorient our policy away from a reflexive embrace of the Saudi regime and to focus on U.S. interests.” Warren co-sponsored a resolution in opposition to U.S. military involvement in Yemen in early 2019.

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Elizabeth Warren
Warren

Marianne Williamson

Author

“Yes. The U.S. should end military and intelligence assistance for the Saudi war in Yemen,” Williamson told The Post.

May. 27: “The blood of starving children in Yemen is on the hands of every US official who chooses a $350B arms sale to Saudi Arabia over the value of their lives.”

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Marianne Williamson
Williamson

Andrew Yang

Tech entrepreneur

“First off, the United States should be providing no aid to Saudi Arabia in its assault on Yemen. It’s creating a humanitarian crisis that ranks amongst the worst of all time. We should end all support for this situation — logistics, arms sales, refueling efforts, intelligence,” Yang told the Council on Foreign Relations.

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Andrew Yang
Yang

Unclear/No response

Unclear/No response

Julian Castro

Former mayor, San Antonio

“The United States must continue assessing our relationship with Saudi Arabia given this behavior, including U.S. support for the Saudi war in Yemen, while continuing to work with our allies to push back on Iran’s destabilizing behavior,” Castro said in a statement in 2018.

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Julian Castro
Castro

Wayne Messam

Mayor, Miramar, Fla.

Messam did not answer this question by publication.

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Wayne Messam
Messam

Tom Steyer

Billionaire activist

Steyer did not answer this question by publication.

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Tom Steyer
Steyer

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Background When Saudi Arabia announced a military offensive against the Iranian-backed Houthi movement in Yemen in 2015, the Obama administration announced “logistical and intelligence support” without “direct military action.” But U.S. opposition grew as the offensive continued, especially with reports of errant 2016 coalition airstrikes that killed civilians and a brief exchange of fire with a U.S. Navy vessel in the area. When President Trump came into office, he signaled strong support for the Saudi-led effort and for direct arms sales to the country, despite growing concern about the operations in Congress. The Senate passed a resolution in March calling on Trump to remove U.S. forces from hostilities in Yemen. A month later, 16 House Republicans joined Democrats in passing the Senate measure. No Democrat in the House or the Senate voted to oppose the legislation, which Trump vetoed.

How candidate positions were compiled

The Washington Post sent a detailed questionnaire to every Democratic presidential campaign asking whether it supports various changes to U.S. foreign policy. Candidates with similar stances were organized into groups using a combination of those answers, legislative records, action taken in an executive role, and other public comments, such as policy discussion on campaign websites, social media posts, interviews, town hall meetings and other news reports and surveys. See something we missed? Let us know.

We expect candidates to develop more detailed policy positions throughout the campaign, and this page will update as we learn more about their plans. We also will note if candidates change their position on an issue. At initial publication, this page included major candidates who had announced a run for president and excluded any who had left the race. The Post will contact any additional candidates as they enter the contest and include them here.

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