Roy Blunt is annoyed with his fellow Republicans, after several walked out of a classified briefing on Tuesday and blasted the Trump administration for willfully ignoring evidence linking Saudi Arabia's crown prince to the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
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Khashoggi, a Saudi contributor to the Washington Post, was killed shortly after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct 2 to obtain paperwork for his upcoming marriage.
The Tennessee Republican added: "If he was in front of a jury, he would be convicted in 30 minutes. That might be the real policy question".
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the order to kill came from the highest levels of the Saudi regime while insisting it was not from King Salman.
A Yemen war powers resolution sponsored by Bernie Sanders, Mike Lee, and Chris Murphy could come to the floor as soon as next week, and its sponsors are seeking an agreement to avoid a potential quagmire that could ensue if senators are left to their own devices without determining rules for which amendments can be offered. It says Saudi Arabia should be held accountable for "contributing to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, the blockade of Qatar, the jailing of political dissidents within Saudi Arabia, the use of force to intimidate rivals, and the abhorrent and unjustified killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi".
Trudeau met the Saudi prince while at the G20 summit in Argentina. Other Republicans who last week had opposed a resolution directing the president to halt USA support of the Saudi war in Yemen now suggested they might change their position after hearing what Haspel had to say in the classified briefing. Later Tuesday, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer issued a statement saying the briefing only "reinforced the need for a strong response to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi", and that Haspel "should brief the full Senate without delay".
And Sen. John Kennedy, a Louisiana Republican who was not part of the briefing, said that "by the director choosing to meet with some, but not others, congratulations to her, she has pissed off everybody".
Menendez has called for a strong U.S. reaction to Khashoggi's death and backs legislation to end all USA support for the Saudi coalition waging war in Yemen.
Senators including Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., still want Haspel to brief the entire Senate on the matter. "Not everyone supports every effort, but I would like all of the efforts to have a hearing", he said.
Khashoggi was killed and then dismembered by a bone saw by a hit squad sent by bin Salman, the Central Intelligence Agency concluded. "They have done, I believe, some permanent damage to that standing". "I would really question someone's judgment if they couldn't figure this out". "That's what the Senate needs help on, and I am open to all suggestions on how to do that". "As to Pompeo and Mattis, I have great respect for them".
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