Overwhelming Support for Override Demonstrates Congressional Commitment to Justice for 9/11 Families
WASHINGTON, September 28, 2016 – CODEPINK applauds today’s Senate and House votes to override President Obama’s veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), the bill that would allow family members of 9/11 victims to sue the Saudi government in U.S. courts. That they overrode the veto by such a massive margin, 97 to 1 in the Senate and 348 to 77 in the House, is a testament to Congressional commitment to justice and accountability for families of the attack. This passage of JASTA over the President’s veto officially marks the first veto override in Obama’s presidency.
JASTA will allow 9/11 family members an avenue to pursue compensation for their losses through the U.S. court system and give them access to tens of thousands of U.S. government documents about the 9/11 attacks that have still not been released. This bill will provide long-awaited transparency and accountability and is a moral and ethical imperative for 9/11 families.
“It is shameful how cozy the US government has been with the Saudi regime for decades, including selling it massive amounts of weapons and facilitating its horrific war in Yemen,” said Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODEPINK and author of Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connection. “This vote can start the much-needed process of distancing ourselves from this violent regime that provides the ideological foundation for terrorist groups worldwide.”
CODEPINK has long fought for justice for the family members of 9/11 victims, advocating for the release of documents that illustrate the connection between Saudi Arabia and the attacks and supporting the passage of JASTA since its inception. To arrange an interview with Medea Benjamin, contact Sam Ritchie at (347) 452-0008 or [email protected].