House Approves Block on Yemen War Vote That Was Hidden in Farm Bill Rules

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) and other lawmakers called attention to the unrelated measure — which narrowly passed 206 to 203

Image Credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images

House lawmakers approved on Wednesday a proposed set of rules governing the Farm Bill debate after it was revealed to obtain a provision that blocks votes on the Yemen conflict.

Lawmakers have quickly moved on the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 since the final version of it was released on Monday.

The Senate passed it on Tuesday before it moved along to the House for consideration.

Some lawmakers called out the unrelated provision in the proposed rules — but it still ended up narrowly passing 206 to 203.

Related: GOP Helps Dems Kill Conservative Amendments to Farm Bill

“Does your congressman know what’s hidden in a procedural vote on the Farm Bill today?” Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) tweeted before the vote on Wednesday.

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“Does he or she care? To avoid a debate on whether the U.S. should be involved in a war in Yemen, today our leadership will trick members into suspending the provisions of the War Powers Act.”

The provision within the proposed rules would specifically prevent lawmakers from forcing a vote for the rest of this year on any resolution that attempts to cut off support for Saudi Arabia in Yemen.

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) and Massie have been leading a coalition trying to push a vote to remove troops in Yemen.

“I urge my colleagues to vote against the rule because the Republicans couldn’t help themselves and had to insert this Yemen issue into this rule,” Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said from the floor right before the vote.

“This issue has been going on for years. This is not a new phenomenon, what’s happening in Yemen. It is a tragedy that has gone on for years.”

Related: Freedom Caucus Kills Big-Spending Farm Bill

The Farm Bill comes after months of bipartisan discussions to draft a final version of the legislation.

President Donald Trump has expressed his support for the measure and is expected to sign if it gets to his desk. He said the bill was in good shape and farmers will be well taken care of; the House is expected to pass it Wednesday.

The legislation over the years has generally provided farmers with crop insurance, subsidies and loans.

Disaster relief provisions apply generally and there are subsidies for specific agricultural industries.

The legislation has also been split with funding for food stamps as well, officially called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Massie also tweeted this on Wednesday:

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