US Senate may consider Ukraine aid separately from border security – report

U.S. Senate
U.S. Senate

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is planning to separate the bipartisan border security deal from the Ukraine/Israel aid bill and consider those independently, The Hill reported on Feb. 7.

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Sources told the journalists that Schumer still intends to hold a vote on the package that combines aid to Ukraine and Israel with the protection of the U.S. border. This strategy could give Democrats an opportunity to later campaign on their tough stance on immigration.

Journalists speculate that Republicans will likely block such a package. However, Schumer is said to have a "Plan B."

An unnamed Democratic senator revealed that Schumer’s backup plan involves removing border security provisions from the package, leaving only U.S. aid for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan in the document. Senators expect that in this form, the bill will pass.

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House Speaker Mike Johnson is pushing for a separate bill for aid to Israel without funds for Ukraine and is skeptical of the bipartisan Senate proposal.

The White House has labeled Johnson’s proposal a "cynical political maneuver" and "trickery," hinting that U.S. President Joe Biden would not sign a standalone bill for aid to Israel if it reached his desk.

Read also: House Speaker Mike Johnson criticizes new bill on US border security

On Jan. 26, the Financial Times wrote that U.S. aid to Ukraine "hangs by a thread" due to Republicans being influenced by former President Donald Trump, who demands the party reject the bipartisan immigration agreement.

On Jan. 19, Johnson mentioned that he frequently discusses border reinforcement with Trump — including conversations just before a meeting focused on the border and aid to Ukraine, hosted by Biden.

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