Republicans and Democrats Introduce $66 Billion Military Aid and Border Bill

A $66.3 billion House bill to fund military aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan and tighten border security was revealed by a group of eight bipartisan House lawmakers on Friday, Politico reports.

Ukraine Caucus Co-Chair Brian Fitzpatrick is leading the effort on the bill,  which is described as a narrower version of the $95 billion aid package approved this week by the Senate.

However, the proposed legislation removes tens of billions of dollars in humanitarian sand economic aid for Gaza and Ukraine from the Senate bill.

The bill is co-sponsored by  GOP Reps. Don Bacon of Nebraska, Mike Lawler of New York, Lori Chavez-DeRemer of Oregon and Democrat Reps. Jared Golden of Maine, Ed Case of Hawaii, Marie Gluesenkamp Pérez of Washington and Jim Costa of California.

Included in the bill is $10.4 billion in aid for Israel. That includes $4 billion for Israel’s Iron Dome and David’s Sling air defense systems and $1.2 billion to field the Iron Beam laser anti-missile system.

The bill also allocates $47.7 billion to aid Ukraine, including $13.8 billion for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative for the Pentagon to sign contracts with U.S. defense companies to provide Kyiv with new weapons and equipment, according to  Politico.

Just under $5  billion is included in the bill to support Taiwan and  other U.S.  allies in the Pacific.

House Foreign Affairs Chair Michael McCaul,  R-Texas was critical of the bill for not including humanitarian aid to Gaza and Ukraine.

He proposed funding nongovernmental organizations rather than the embattled United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East.

“There are ways to deal with humanitarian assistance, particularly in Ukraine that I think are more intelligent than just zeroing out the account,” McCaul said.

The bill includes provisions aimed at tightening  security at the southern border in a bid to try to win over Republicans who won’t approve Ukraine aid without addressing the border.

The bill comes after House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., signaled to lawmakers Monday night that the Senate’s $95 billion national security package doesn’t have much chance in the lower chamber since it fails to address U.S. border security.

“In the absence of having received any single border policy change from the Senate, the House will have to continue to work its own will on these important matters,” Johnson said. “America deserves better than the Senate’s status quo.”

The current Senate bill has funding appropriated for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan. House Republicans have long indicated their unwillingness to pass any further Ukraine aid unless it be tied to resources to deal with the southern border.

Jeffrey Rodack

Jeffrey Rodack, who has nearly a half century in news as a senior editor and city editor for national and local publications, has covered politics for Newsmax for nearly seven years.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

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