House Speaker vows to bring Israel package to floor this week – without Ukraine funding

White House had asked for aid to Israel and Ukraine to be tied together

Eric Garcia
Monday 30 October 2023 14:35 GMT
Mike Johnson says Congress will pass 'stand-alone Israel funding bill' before supporting Ukraine

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Newly elected House Speaker Mike Johnson pledged on Sunday to put an aid package for Israel on the floor this week without aid for Ukraine.

Mr Johnson, whose Republican colleagues unanimously voted to make him speaker on Wednesday, called the package of support for Israel in the wake of a terrorist attack by Hamas that killed 1,400 people a “pressing and urgent need.”

“There are lots of things going on around the world that we have to address and we will. But right now, what’s happening in Israel takes the immediate attention, and I think we’ve got to separate that and get it through,” he said on Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo.

Mr Johnson’s comments come in response to a question about President Joe Biden’s request for Congress to couple funding for wars in both Israel and Ukraine, pitching them both as “vital for America’s national security.”

Congress was largely unable to respond quickly to the Hamas massacre after eight Republicans and every Democrat voted to eject Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House and Republicans cycled through three candidates for speaker who failed to win 217 votes before they nominated Mr Johnson.

Earlier this month, Mr Biden requested that Congress approve a $105bn supplemental funding bill that included aid to both Israel and Ukraine as well as money to secure the US-Mexico border.

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