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Business News/ News / World/  Israel, Ukraine Aid to Receive Separate US House Votes This Week
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Israel, Ukraine Aid to Receive Separate US House Votes This Week

Speaker Mike Johnson plans separate US House votes this week on new aid to Israel and Ukraine, in an attempt to assemble fragile coalitions to speed weaponry to both besieged allies.

Israel, Ukraine Aid to Receive Separate US House Votes This WeekPremium
Israel, Ukraine Aid to Receive Separate US House Votes This Week

(Bloomberg) -- Speaker Mike Johnson plans separate US House votes this week on new aid to Israel and Ukraine, in an attempt to assemble fragile coalitions to speed weaponry to both besieged allies. 

The move could end a months-long Republican blockade on help for Kyiv while also responding quickly to Iran’s missile and drone attack in Israel over the weekend. 

“The world is watching us to see how we’ll react," Johnson said Monday, as he announced the plan.

The maneuver taps urgency among many US lawmakers to show solidarity with Israel in the wake of the attack while testing the determination of ultraconservatives to block Ukraine aid. Hardline Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia has threatened to force a vote on deposing the speaker if the House considers any Ukraine aid.

Greene said Monday night she hasn’t decided whether to proceed with an overthrow attempt. 

The speaker’s decision to vote on Ukraine aid greatly boosts the chances of resolving a congressional impasse that has dragged on since October, when President Joe Biden requested emergency assistance for Kyiv’s fight against a Russian invasion. 

Splitting the aid into separate packages could ease passage. Ultra-conservatives have balked at Ukraine spending, which has been widely supported by Democrats. Progressives, meanwhile, oppose funding to Israel without restrictions but have pushed to get Ukraine needed aid quickly. 

House Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries said early Monday evening Republicans hadn’t yet informed him of provisions in the legislation so he couldn’t comment on potential Democratic support. 

Republican Representative Kevin Hern of Oklahoma, head of the Republican Study Committee, the largest group of House conservatives, said Johnson is “doing the right thing."

Johnson’s influence over the fractious House Republican majority is newly strengthened by presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who offered a public show of support for the speaker in a joint appearance Friday at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida.

The House would vote separately on an aid package for Taiwan under Johnson’s plan. Taiwan funding generally has support in both parties.

A fourth bill would contain a variety of national security measures including seizing Russian assets and may also expedite natural gas exports.

Johnson said the Ukraine aid will include new accountability measures, a demand of ultraconservatives. Loans will also be a component of the Ukraine aid, he said.

The speaker said he anticipates the House will vote on the aid measures Friday evening.

Representative Andy Biggs of Arizona, an ultraconservative and Ukraine aid opponent, said he approved of Johnsons’ choice to break up the aid decisions into separate bills.

The Senate passed a $95 billion aid package in February combining assistance to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan.

--With assistance from Christian Hall.

More stories like this are available on bloomberg.com

©2024 Bloomberg L.P.

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Published: 16 Apr 2024, 05:32 AM IST
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