Jared Golden, Chellie Pingree oppose resolution condemning Iran govt violence against protesters

President Donald J. Trump flanked by Rep. Chellie Pingree (left) and Rep. Jared Golden (right) of Maine. Both Maine representatives voted against allowing resolution condemning the violence of the Iranian government against protesters to move forward.

WASHINGTON D.C. – It’s not uncommon for Reps. Jared Golden and Chellie Pingree from Maine to unite to oppose issues President Donald Trump supports, but earlier this week, they may have outdone themselves. The moment came when both Golden and Pingree had to vote on moving forward a House resolution that condemned the Iranian government and Iranian security forces for violence against, and killing of, civilian protesters in Iran.

Since the day the Iranian government admitted to having accidentally shot down a civilian airliner after launching a retaliatory missile attack on a U.S. base in Iraq, Iranian people have surged into the streets in protest of their government. The protesters are not satisfied with their government’s admission they shot down the plan, they want Iran’s leaders out of office.

In attempts to quell the protests, the Iranian military has fired live rounds at protesters, viciously beaten protesters, and worse. Some of it has been captured in graphic videos that have been distributed widely via social media.

Some estimates say the Iranian regime has killed hundreds or, according to Reuters News, into the thousands, of their own citizens in protests that have sprung up over recent months. That concern is almost certainly what prompted President Trump to tweet at the Iranian regime on Sunday “DO NOT KILL YOUR PROTESTERS.”

Just two days after solidarity with the protesters in Iran prompted that tweet from President Trump, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy introduced a House Resolution condemning the Iranian government for shooting down their own airliner on January 8th, 2020, killing all 176 on board and for Iranian Security Forces killing approximately “1,500 demonstrators when they rose up across the country in protest.”

House Democrats, led by Nancy Pelosi, were opposed to the resolution, and voted down a procedural move made by Rep. McCarthy to advance it during a vote on another resolution.

Joining Speaker Pelosi in voting to block the McCarthy resolution were Reps. Jared Golden and Chellie Pingree of Maine, along with a coalition of Democrats that included Rep. Ilhan Omar, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rep. Rashida Tlaib and 220 others.

Late last year, the website FiveThirtyEight, a well-respected data and analysis site affiliated with ABC News, calculated that Rep. Golden had voted against President Trump more than 90% of the time. That score ranked Golden among the worst representatives in the entire country that represent districts President Trump won in 2016. The latest data from FiveThirtyEight has barely moved, scoring Golden at voting with President Trump 11.1% of the time and about 53.6% of the time less than he should, as compared to President Trump’s support in the district.

Rep. Chellie Pingree, who represents a much more liberal district, is actually voting with President Trump more than Rep. Golden in the latest data, at 11.5% of the time.

The two have aligned to oppose the President in recent votes on the USMCA trade deal to replace NAFTA, a war powers resolution and on an article of impeachment against the President, among other votes.

No statements were released from Golden or Pingree explaining their opposition to the resolution. Rep. Pingree did recently release a statement attacking President Trump’s reported consideration of additional funds to continue construction of a wall along the southern border of the United States.

The full text of Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy’s resolution can be read below:

H. RES. 791

Condemning the actions of the Government of Iran and supporting the protesters in Iran, their demands for accountability, and their desire for the Government of Iran to respect freedom and human rights.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

January 13, 2020

Mr. McCarthy submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs


RESOLUTION

Condemning the actions of the Government of Iran and supporting the protesters in Iran, their demands for accountability, and their desire for the Government of Iran to respect freedom and human rights.

Whereas in November 2019, according to Iranian interior ministry officials who provided details to Reuters, Iranian security forces killed approximately 1,500 demonstrators when they rose up across the country in protest;

Whereas, on January 8, 2020, the Government of Iran shot down Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, lied about its responsibility, and then admitted to mistakenly shooting the airliner down, killing all 176 people on board;

Whereas the aircraft was carrying 167 passengers and nine crewmembers;

Whereas passengers were citizens of Iran, Canada, Ukraine, Great Britain, Germany and Sweden, at least 16 were children under the age of 10, and 13 were students and alumni of Sharif University of Technology in Tehran;

Whereas Iran’s state news agency initially reported the crash resulted from an engine fire caused by a technical fault;

Whereas Iranian officials repeatedly denied that the flight was shot down by its armed forces;

Whereas, on January 11, 2020, three days after the downing of the flight, the Government of Iran admitted that its armed forces unintentionally shot down the airliner;

Whereas, on January 11, 2020, the Government of Iran arrested the British Ambassador to Iran, in violation of the Vienna Convention, after he attended a vigil for the victims of the downed flight, and he was released hours later;

Whereas, on January 11, 2020, protestors gathered across Iran to denounce what they called lying and incompetence by the country’s leadership;

Whereas at Amirkabir University of Technology in Tehran, protestors tore down posters of Maj. Gen. Qassem Solemaini;

Whereas, on January 13, 2020, video from inside Iran showed protestors chanting slogans including “Clerics get lost!”;

Whereas video appears to show Iranian security forces firing live ammunition at protestors and a woman being carried away leaving a trail of blood on the ground as people shout that she has been shot; and

Whereas the President expressed support for “the brave, long-suffering people of Iran” and called on the Iranian Government to allow human rights groups to monitor the protests and not to use force on the protestors: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

(1) condemns the Government of Iran for killing approximately 1,500 Iranian citizens who were protesting their government;

(2) condemns the Government of Iran for shooting down Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752;

(3) condemns the Government of Iran for repeatedly lying to its people and to the world about its responsibility for the downing of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752;

(4) calls on the Government of Iran to—

(A) refrain from the use of violence; and

(B) protect the rights of freedom of expression and peaceful assembly; and

(5) supports the protestors in Iran, their demands for accountability, and their desire for the Government of Iran to respect freedom and human rights.

Read this resolution at the official website of U.S. Congress:

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-resolution/791/text

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