Hyde-Smith cosponsors bill to repeal arms embargo on Israel

Published 10:00 am Thursday, May 16, 2024

U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), of Brookhaven, on Tuesday joined Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) in introducing legislation to force the Biden administration to send critical weapons to Israel.

The Israel Security Assistant Support Act was introduced in response to President Biden’s announcement that the administration would withhold certain U.S. weapons from Israel if it launched a full-scale ground invasion of the Gaza city of Rafah.

“President Biden, in his growing desperation, is not acting in the best interests of the United States by turning his back on our Israeli allies. Israel has had to fight for its survival from its founding and we’ve always been there for them. The President’s departure from this policy only plays into the hands of Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran, and others who seek to destroy Israel,” Hyde-Smith said.

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“President Biden’s decision to impose a de facto arms embargo on Israel is a betrayal of one of our most important allies as it fights an existential war for survival. This bill will reverse Joe Biden’s arms embargo and withhold the salaries of officials who implement it,” said Cotton.

The Israel Security Assistant Support Act would force the Biden administration to complete the delivery of weapons to Israel. It would also cancel the salaries of any Biden administration official at the U.S. Department of Defense or U.S. Department of State, who takes any action to withhold the delivery of weapons to Israel.

Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Katie Britt (R-Ala.), Ted Budd (R-N.C.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), John Kennedy (R-La.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Pete Ricketts (R-Neb.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) also cosponsored the Cotton legislation.  U.S. Representative Ken Calvert (R-Calif.) introduced companion House legislation.

Hyde-Smith last week also cosponsored S.Res.682, offered by U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), which condemns the Biden administration decision to halt the shipment of U.S.-made ammunition and weapons to the State of Israel. It also demands the expeditious delivery of previously-approved defense weapons to Israel.