Politics

Sanders a No-Show for Amendment Commending U.S. Forces for Soleimani Strike

Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders / Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) was a no-show Thursday to vote on an amendment commending the U.S. armed forces and intelligence community for the strike that killed top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.

Sanders was one of only two senators to skip the vote, with Ed Markey (D., Mass.) also absent. Sanders's fellow 2020 presidential candidates in the Senate, Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.) and Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.), attended and voted "nay" on the amendment, which passed 64 to 34.

All 53 Republicans, 10 Democrats, and Independent Angus King (Maine) supported the amendment introduced by Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Tex.). It expressly praised President Donald Trump, who ordered the Jan. 3 strike that took out the terrorist leader of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

The amendment was attached to a resolution curbing Trump's war powers regarding Iran. The resolution passed 55 to 45, which left it short of a veto-proof majority.

Sanders's office did not respond to a request for comment.

Sanders was critical of the killing of Soleimani, calling it an "assassination" and likening it to Russia's killing of dissidents under Vladimir Putin. He also called it an escalation that could lead the United States into war with Iran.

Sanders, who sits on the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, is coming off a narrow victory over former South Bend, Ind., mayor Pete Buttigieg in the New Hampshire primary. Klobuchar finished in third place, while Warren took fourth.