The U.S. House of Representatives on Nov. 2 passed a bill to provide $14.3 billion in aid for Israel, a move that President Joe Biden has promised to veto if it does not also include support for Ukraine, The Hill reports.
Democratic Party lawmakers object to the fact that the bill does not include any aid to Ukraine and are calling for the bill to be paired with additional security assistance for Kyiv. But many Republicans are opposed to sending more aid to Ukraine.
“The president would veto an Israel-only bill. I think we have made that clear,” said Biden administration spokesperson John Kirby on Nov. 2.
The move is seen as a major leadership test for the new House Speaker Mike Johnson.
“Ukraine will come in short order, it will come next, And you’ve heard me say that we want to pair border security with Ukraine … If we’re going to take care of a border in Ukraine, we need to take care of America’s border as well,” Johnson said.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer criticized the bill saying that he “will not be considering this deeply flawed proposal from the House GOP. Instead, we will work together on our own bipartisan emergency aid package that includes aid to Israel, Ukraine, competition with the Chinese government and humanitarian aid to Gaza.”
The 226 to 196 vote mostly fell along strict party lines, with 12 Democrats joining Republicans.
However, President Biden is trying to push a much larger $106 billion package that features funding for Israel, Ukraine, border security, and countries in the Indo-Pacific.
Speaker Johnson has warned Republican senators that the larger package would not pass through the lower chamber.