Senate Moves $40 Billion Ukraine Aid Package Forward

Critics are calling out the Senate’s decision due to supply chain shortages and other economic pressure on Americans.

  • The United States Senate voted Monday to advance the bill that would provide $40 billion in aid to Ukraine, according to Breitbart News.
  • The Senate has invoked cloture on the motion for H.R. 7691 in an 81-11 vote, which means that the senate can begin debate on the Ukraine aid package.
  • Senate Democrats overwhelmingly voted to support the legislation while Republicans such as Sens. Josh Hawley (R-MO) and Rand Paul (R-KY) voted against it.
  • The Senate majority and minority leaders tried to get the bill passed quickly in an uncharacteristic bi-partisan effort on the part of Leaders Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
  • Paul was credited with single-handedly holding up the Ukraine aid bill, offering a statement citing the lack of oversight as one reason for his frustration with the bill: “My oath of office is the US constitution not to any foreign nation and no matter how sympathetic the cause, my oath of office is to the national security of the United States of America,” Paul said on the Senate floor last week. “We cannot save Ukraine by dooming the US economy.”
  • Paul said he would try to delay the bill until Thursday. He told CNN, “Because I think we should have an inspector general. We have one out there and overseeing Afghan waste. He’s been very good at it. You don’t have to wait for an appointment. He’s got a team up and running. And I think that’s what we should do.”
  • Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) proposed a potential compromise, saying that an amendment could be added to target where the aid should go: “The House proposal would spend nearly ten times the annual defense budget of Ukraine while delegating broad discretion to the President and bureaucrats regarding where and how most of the money is spent. Much of the money will likely go to nations across the world not involved in the conflict. Putin’s aggression is indefensible, and we should look for appropriate ways to support Ukrainians in the noble defense of their homeland. We must also make sure Congress maintains its constitutional role of directing engagement in conflict and ensure that we are not spending unnecessary funds while in a time of historic inflation and ballooning national debt. My amendment will ensure we can help our friends without compromising our constitutional or financial integrity.”
  • Of the $40 billion in aid proposed, the legislation states that more than $20 billion is earmarked for military supplies and another roughly $20 billion for humanitarian, economic, and other aid to Ukraine.
  • Sens. Paul, Hawley, Mike Crapo (R-ID), Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Mike Braun (R-IN), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), John Boozman (R-AR), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), and Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) voted against the bill.
  • A detailed breakdown of the bill’s funding allocation can be found here.