Press Releases

Washington, DC – House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith released the following statement after House Republican leadership blocked debate on a bipartisan privileged resolution led by Representatives Smith, Ro Khanna, and Mark Pocan:

“The decision by House Republicans to deprivilege the Yemen resolution undermines the responsibility of Congress to have a transparent debate on U.S. engagement in the civil war in Yemen. As the Yemeni people face the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, the urgency and need for Congressional attention could not be greater.

“There are no easy answers to finding a peaceful resolution to the civil war in Yemen. However, ducking the debate in Congress on what role the U.S. should have in Yemen undermines a Congressional imperative to examine the issue. A Democratic majority in the new Congress must reassert close oversight regarding Yemen.”

Today, Representatives Adam Smith (WA-09), Ro Khanna (CA-17), and Mark Pocan (WI-02), leaders of H. Con Res. 138 in the House, released the following statement in response to the announcement that the U.S. will be halting the refueling of Saudi-coalition aircraft in Yemen:

“Ending U.S. refueling of Saudi-led coalition aircraft is an encouraging step towards ending U.S. involvement in the Yemen civil conflict. The Yemeni people are facing the world’s gravest humanitarian crisis. The U.S. should be squarely focused on alleviating this crisis and doing everything we can to encourage an end to the civil conflict that has exacerbated the dire humanitarian situation. Picking sides and supporting the Saudi-coalition is contrary to those goals. In addition to ending refueling efforts, the United States should pause sales of offensive weapons to Saudi Arabia. The announcement to end refueling comes on the heels of provisions included in the NDAA signed into law in August calling out U.S. refueling of Saudi-coalition aircraft, showing that oversight from Congress has an impact on pushing this administration to end U.S. involvement. Congress should send a clear message that the U.S. should not be engaged in the Yemeni civil conflict by passing H. Con. Res 138 during the lame duck.”

Each Veterans Day, we join together to honor the men and women who have served our country. We owe these brave Americans our respect and our freedom and extend our gratitude to them and their families for the sacrifices they have made.

After their military service, our veterans continue to give back as valuable members of our community. As the Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, I have the honor of representing the thousands of veterans who call the Puget Sound region home. I have consistently worked to ensure that our veterans receive the high-quality care and support they deserve for their years of faithful service. We must continue to improve health care for current and former servicemen and women, and improve transitional support and job training programs for departing members of the military. On Veterans Day, we recommit to fulfilling our promise to our service members, their families and our veterans.

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09) announced his bid to run for Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. As Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, Smith sent the following letter to his Democratic colleagues in the House of Representatives:

“Together, we have made strides on national security issues but much more must be done to conduct vigorous oversight of the Trump Administration and the Department of Defense. Specifically, we must look to eliminate inefficiency and waste at the DOD; boost oversight of sensitive military operations and ensure that the military works to avoid civilian casualties; protect our environmental laws nationwide; advance green technology in defense; take substantial steps to reduce America’s overreliance on nuclear weapons; and promote greater transparency in national security matters.
“It is important that we have a military that reflects the United States in all of its diversity as well as a Defense Department that engages with businesses of all sizes and from all communities. We need inclusive armed services that can attract the best, most talented people without arbitrary and discriminatory barriers that narrow the field of people who can serve their country. I will continue to work with you to ensure that the United States’ military is equipped to play an effective role in our defense, while appropriately responding to new and evolving threats and challenges. It is critical that we ensure our service members and their families continue to have access to quality benefits, assistance programs, and medical care.”

Below is the full text of the letter:

Dear Democratic Colleagues:

During the 115th Congress, it has been an honor to serve as the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Armed Services and represent the Democratic Caucus on national security matters. As we begin to organize for the 116th Congress, I am asking for your support to serve our caucus as Chairman of the Committee on Armed Services.

Together, we have made strides on national security issues but much more must be done to conduct vigorous oversight of the Trump Administration and the Department of Defense. Specifically, we must look to eliminate inefficiency and waste at the DOD; boost oversight of sensitive military operations and ensure that the military works to avoid civilian casualties; protect our environmental laws nationwide; advance green technology in defense; take substantial steps to reduce America’s overreliance on nuclear weapons; and promote greater transparency in national security matters.

It is important that we have a military that reflects the United States in all of its diversity as well as a Defense Department that engages with businesses of all sizes and from all communities. We need inclusive armed services that can attract the best, most talented people without arbitrary and discriminatory barriers that narrow the field of people who can serve their country. I will continue to work with you to ensure that the United States’ military is equipped to play an effective role in our defense, while appropriately responding to new and evolving threats and challenges. It is critical that we ensure our service members and their families continue to have access to quality benefits, assistance programs, and medical care.

Every Member of our caucus has an interest in national security and their voices need to be heard. As Ranking Member, I have always sought to remain available to all Members and have valued the opportunity to visit military installations in districts throughout the country. Through these visits, and in numerous conversations with Members of our caucus, I have gained a greater understanding of the issues our constituents face. This outreach has given me greater opportunities to advance policies that are at the core of our Democratic values and principles.

As our country continues to face great challenges, I am committed to fighting for the national security principles and goals of the Democratic Caucus. I want to make sure every Member knows I will always have an open door for them and their staffs on issues that are important to them.

While we organize for the 116th Congress, I would be honored to receive your support to serve as the Chairman of the House Committee on Armed Services. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly at 202-225-8901.

Washington D.C. – Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement in response to the resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions:

“As Attorney General, Jeff Sessions actively undermined voting rights and civil rights. Sessions has a horrific record when it comes to protecting the individual rights of American citizens, and I expressed my serious concerns with him at the time that he was nominated. I am however, worried that Sessions’ firing today could possibly signal an effort by President Trump to undermine the ongoing Mueller investigation into the foreign interference that took place during the 2016 election. We in Congress will do everything we can to push back against that eventuality. We must affirm our commitment to protecting the integrity of the Mueller investigation and making sure the President does not interfere with its conclusions.”