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U.S.-Iran tensions

Democratic Sen. Chris Coons says attacks on Saudi oil facilities 'may well be the thing that calls for military action against Iran'

Count Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) among those who might support military action against Iran if intelligence determines Tehran was indeed behind the weekend attacks on major Saudi oil facilities.

Coons, appearing Monday on Fox & Friends, told host Brian Kilmeade that if intelligence supports claims that Tehran, rather than Yemen's Houthi rebels, were behind the strikes, "this may well be the thing that calls for military action against Iran." The Houthis, who are backed by Tehran in Yemen's civil war, claimed responsibility for the drone attacks, but Coons said it "seems credible" that the rebel group does not employ the advanced weaponry used against the facilities. Of course, the U.S. already believes Iran supplies the Houthis with arms and training, so it is likely Washington will consider Tehran responsible, whether directly or indirectly.

Regardless, this may be the final straw for Coons. The senator acknowledged that the U.S.'s relationship with the Saudis "has been badly strained" by the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, but added that "Iran is really pushing our resolve." If Tehran attacks American allies in the Middle East, such as Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Israel, Coons said, "we need to take seriously taking action against them."

That prompted a compliment from Kilmeade, who seemed inspired by the fact that a military operation against Iran could unite Democrats and Republicans — if the evidence supports the accusations, that is. Watch the exchange below. Tim O'Donnell