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In a Debate of Mostly Contrasts, McCaskill and Hawley Agreed on This

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Carolina Hidalgo
/
St. Louis Public Radio

In Thursday night’s US Senate debate between Claire McCaskill and Josh Hawley, there were plenty of contrasts.  But on one point, the candidates agreed.

That point of agreement was on how the United States should respond if it finds out that Saudi Arabia was behind the disappearance and suspected murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The Saudi journalist, who wrote for The Washington Post, went into the Saudi consulate in Turkey recently and was never heard from again.

McCaskill had already said earlier in the week that if the US sees credible evidence that the Saudi government was behind the journalist’s murder, then “all options” should be on the table in terms of holding the Persian Gulf country accountable.

And in Thursday’s debate, Hawley agreed—saying  all options should be on the table, adding that the punishment would be severe.                         

The United States sells military equipment to the Saudi government and relies on the kingdom to keep oil prices stable for world markets.                                                        

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is one of America’s strongest allies in the Middle East, despite an abysmal human rights record. The relationship is strategic for several reasons, one being that Saudi Arabia is a hegemonic power against another heavyweight in the region: Iran.