Billions for Ukraine and Israel: US Senate rejects package

In the USA, a cross-party negotiated legislative package on migration policy and aid for Israel and Ukraine failed after pressure from former President Donald Trump.

The US Senate has rejected a legislative package worth $118 billion (around 110 billion euros) that would provide money for securing the US border with Mexico and aid for Ukraine and Israel. The package failed to pass on Wednesday due to a lack of approval from Republicans. Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced a quick second vote that would only focus on foreign aid.

Second vote on aid to Ukraine and Israel announced

The Republicans’ “no” to the latest draft of the legislative package had already become apparent. The bill will be “dead on arrival” if it reaches the House of Representatives, said House Republican leader Mike Johnson. The former Republican US President Donald Trump, who will most likely run against incumbent Joe Biden in the election next November, had also spoken out clearly against it in advance.

For months, opposition Republicans have insisted that additional aid to the two U.S. allies be tied to measures to contain the large number of migrants coming into the U.S. across the Mexican border. Illegal immigration is a central issue in the US election campaign. However, Trump has urged his party colleagues not to compromise on this issue. Many Republicans then rejected the legislative package when it was released last Sunday, even though it contained many of their demands.

The so-called National Security Supplementary Act includes, among other things, $60 billion to support Ukraine. Also planned are $14.1 billion in support for Israel and $20.2 billion for border security. The compromise negotiated by Democrats and Republicans also includes numerous changes to immigration policy.

The Senate is expected to vote on Wednesday on a $96 billion package that will scrap migration policy reforms but keep foreign aid in place. However, the release of funds to Israel and Ukraine remains questionable, even if the Senate gives the green light. Because the aid must also pass the House of Representatives, in which the Republicans have the majority. So far they have refused the help.