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Senate GOP Blocks Biden's Ukraine Bailout

State of the Union: Senate Republicans successfully blocked a $111 billion supplemental funding package.

US-POLITICS-BIDEN

On Wednesday, Republicans in the Senate successfully blocked a four-part supplemental spending package for Ukraine, Israel, the Indo-Pacific, and border security.

For the past few months, President Joe Biden has been pushing for a four-part supplemental package that covers the four aforementioned issue areas. His administration’s October proposal totaled $106 billion, the bulk of which was for Ukraine.

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Both Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed support for Biden’s plan. At several junctures, McConnell tried to force the package on his own conference but was rebuffed. The only way a deal was possible in the Senate was to negotiate on the border security funding and policies contained in the supplemental. A bipartisan group of senators tried to iron out the border security provisions for about a month, but Schumer grew impatient as negotiators hit roadblocks. 

Schumer resolved to force a vote on a four-part supplemental on Wednesday, and, without an agreement with Republicans, Democrats unveiled a $111 billion supplemental funding package. The package would have provided Ukraine another $65 billion in U.S. support. Israel’s share was about $14 billion.

The Democrats’ supplemental package would have provided around $23 billion for the border, but don’t be fooled. While $11.8 billion would have gone to combating the drug trade and human trafficking, there were no provisions in the legislation that would have required the lawless Biden administration to hold up their end of the bargain. What’s more, the package provided billions of dollars for the Biden administration to process even more migrants and let them into the United States.

Sen. Mike Lee saw Democrat’s ‘border security’ provisions for what they really were. “Americans deserve real border security and a real debate over billions of their tax dollars being sent overseas,” Lee told The American Conservative

The vote to advance the $111 billion supplemental package could not muster the support needed to clear the upper chamber’s cloture rules and failed 49-51. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont voted with every Senate Republican, citing concerns with the aid the U.S. would provide to Israel. Schumer switched his vote to no at the last minute because it gives him the prerogative to reintroduce the bill in the future.

If Schumer does reintroduce the legislation, Lee told TAC “this attempt by the Swamp to jam everything together in a massive mess to avoid public scrutiny is dead on arrival in the Senate, as it should be.”

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