Top Republicans slam Trump for statement backing Saudi Arabia

Top Senate Republicans slammed President Donald Trump for his statement backing Saudi Arabia in the wake of ...

Posted: Nov 21, 2018 12:44 PM
Updated: Nov 21, 2018 12:44 PM

Top Senate Republicans slammed President Donald Trump for his statement backing Saudi Arabia in the wake of the death and dismemberment of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker, tweeted Tuesday, "I never thought I'd see the day a White House would moonlight as a public relations firm for the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia."

Continents and regions

Donald Trump

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

Government organizations - US

Jamal Khashoggi

Lindsey Graham

Middle East

Middle East and North Africa

Misc people

Political Figures - US

Political organizations

Politics

Saudi Arabia

US Congress

US federal government

US political parties

US Republican Party

US Senate

White House

Crime, law enforcement and corrections

Crimes against persons

Criminal offenses

Homicide

Murder

The criticism follows an official statement the White House released Tuesday, under the subject line "Statement from President Donald J. Trump on Standing with Saudi Arabia."

"Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event -- maybe he did and maybe he didn't!" Trump writes.

The President continues, "we may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi," and said, "In any case, our relationship is with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. They have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran."

Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist and Virginia resident, was killed last month at a Saudi consulate in Turkey. He was a frequent critic of the Saudi regime. The Saudis initially denied any knowledge of his death, but then later said a group of rogue operators were responsible for his killing. But US officials have speculated that such a mission -- including the 15 men sent from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to murder him -- could not have been carried out without the authorization of Saudi leader Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Later in the day at a news conference, Trump said he was "not going to destroy the economy of our country" over Khashoggi's death by giving up arms deals to Saudi Arabia.

South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham wrote in a series of tweets Tuesday, "One thing I learned during the Obama years is that when you look the other way regarding problems in the Middle East, it seldom works out."

Graham said former President Barack Obama "chose to look the other way as Iran took increasingly provocative actions," and said, "Each time it led to even worse Iranian behavior and created even larger problems for the future."

"Likewise, it is not in our national security interests to look the other way when it comes to the brutal murder of Mr. Jamal #Khashoggi," Graham continued.

After Saudi Arabia admitted that Khashoggi had been killed in its Istanbul consulate, five high-ranking officials were dismissed, including bin Salman's media chief and the deputy head of the Saudi intelligence service.

Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, voiced his disagreement with the President, and tweeted, "The President indicates that Saudi Arabia is the lesser two evils compared to Iran and so the US won't punish Saudi Arabia for the brutal killing and dismemberment of a dissident journalist in their consulate."

"We should, at the very least, NOT reward Saudi Arabia with our sophisticated armaments that they in turn use to bomb civilians," Paul continued.

He also said of the statement released today by the President, "I'm pretty sure this statement is Saudi Arabia First, not America First," and speculated that national security adviser John Bolton wrote the statement.

Paul said he would "continue to press for legislation to stop the Saudi arms sales and the war in Yemen."

Former 2012 Republican presidential nominee and now Utah Senator-elect Mitt Romney, tweeted: "America can't excuse & minimize the brutal & gruesome murder of Jamal Khashoggi, a US resident & columnist. Our country is defined by human values, by principle above convenience, & by commitment to morality."

"We must subject the perpetrators of this outrage to withering sanction," Romney continued.

Corker and ranking Foreign Relations Committee member Sen. Bob Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, sent a letter to the President on Tuesday calling for him to officially determine whether the crown prince was directly involved in Khashoggi's murder.

"In light of recent developments, including the Saudi government's acknowledgment that Saudi officials killed Mr. Khashoggi in its Istanbul consulate," the letter reads, "we request that your determination specifically address whether Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman is responsible for Mr. Khashoggi's murder."

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 657037

Reported Deaths: 12450
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion901321624
Lake48105871
Allen35552632
Hamilton31839393
St. Joseph29538510
Elkhart25261412
Vanderburgh21115377
Tippecanoe19765197
Johnson16242352
Porter15838267
Hendricks15723296
Clark11843179
Madison11672314
Vigo11503228
Monroe10248158
Delaware9788178
LaPorte9720194
Howard9017194
Kosciusko8514107
Bartholomew7373147
Warrick7369146
Hancock7362128
Floyd7139164
Wayne6586188
Grant6395157
Morgan6040124
Boone603388
Dubois5868111
Dearborn540266
Henry539492
Marshall5390104
Cass537199
Noble506775
Jackson462063
Shelby458490
Lawrence4154111
Gibson399681
Harrison395160
Clinton392353
DeKalb382078
Montgomery381583
Knox354484
Miami354063
Whitley346235
Huntington338176
Steuben335955
Wabash328775
Putnam325959
Ripley325161
Adams320249
Jasper312943
White295351
Jefferson292770
Daviess284296
Fayette270255
Decatur269388
Greene259978
Posey259731
Wells255374
Scott248446
LaGrange240170
Clay238944
Randolph225076
Spencer215830
Jennings213544
Washington207727
Sullivan202038
Fountain200341
Starke185950
Owen181652
Jay177328
Fulton176437
Carroll175618
Perry172435
Orange170450
Rush163922
Franklin158335
Vermillion158040
Tipton145441
Parke137915
Pike127232
Blackford120027
Pulaski105643
Newton96431
Brown94639
Benton91113
Crawford90113
Martin80114
Switzerland7507
Warren74612
Union66810
Ohio52711
Unassigned0425

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 958153

Reported Deaths: 16968
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1109381191
Cuyahoga944201702
Hamilton72486944
Montgomery46927869
Summit39637941
Butler35004461
Lucas34724755
Stark29011826
Warren22137269
Lorain21738385
Mahoning19251533
Lake18178300
Clermont18172206
Delaware16261128
Licking14820194
Fairfield14378157
Trumbull14136454
Greene13470209
Medina13188218
Clark12121332
Wood11384193
Portage10829152
Allen10710231
Richland10165198
Miami9937179
Columbiana8049179
Muskingum8036123
Tuscarawas7974233
Pickaway795898
Marion7936134
Wayne7791216
Erie6783181
Ross6065135
Geauga5978129
Hancock5941110
Scioto5867105
Ashtabula5811140
Lawrence519073
Union505052
Darke5006122
Belmont484787
Sandusky472393
Jefferson4709107
Huron4701116
Seneca4620103
Athens456231
Mercer4559101
Auglaize453896
Washington451286
Shelby438867
Knox397884
Putnam3964101
Madison388747
Ashland374594
Fulton374364
Defiance3670101
Brown366742
Crawford354296
Preble350570
Logan349757
Clinton336162
Highland323652
Ottawa318467
Williams299578
Jackson287056
Guernsey283234
Champaign282545
Fayette265642
Perry265239
Morrow256624
Henry242665
Hardin241856
Holmes2416104
Coshocton230246
Van Wert227749
Gallia219446
Adams213732
Pike212025
Wyandot207652
Hocking192148
Carroll178828
Paulding158423
Meigs133536
Noble127842
Monroe114936
Harrison99132
Morgan98834
Vinton76215
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
33° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 28°
Angola
Clear
30° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 25°
Huntington
Partly Cloudy
32° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 32°
Fort Wayne
Clear
33° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 28°
Lima
Partly Cloudy
35° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 27°
Cooler Thursday, More Warmth Friday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events