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US lawmakers will not reach deal in 2023 for more Ukraine aid

by Lance Luo December 20, 2023 12:22 AM 2 min read
U.S. President Joe Biden waves as he returns to the White House on Dec. 19, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
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The United States Senate will not be voting on a deal this year to provide more aid to Ukraine, Reuters reported on Dec. 19.

"Our negotiators are going to be working very, very diligently over the December and January break period, and our goal is to get something done as soon as we get back," Democratic Party Senator Chuck Schumer told reporters.

Funding for Ukraine is expected to run out if U.S. lawmakers do not approve additional spending before the holiday break.

The White House’s request for $61 billion in additional budget support has failed to garner enough support in Congress. Republicans on Dec. 6 blocked a major aid bill, and are demanding that further support to Ukraine be tied to sweeping reforms to U.S. immigration policy, something Democrats say is non-negotiable.

Immigration is one of the most sensitive issues in the U.S. and updates to existing legislation have been elusive over the past few decades. "I cannot state how complex this is. It's the most complicated area of American law," said independent Senator Kyrsten Sinema.

President Zelensky in Washington on Dec. 12 tried to persuade U.S. lawmakers to approve more aid, but left largely empty-handed.

It is unclear if any deal reached by the Senate will be supported by the Republican-controlled House, where a significant number of lawmakers oppose additional funding to Ukraine.

Congress gridlocked one day before holiday break without Ukraine deal
U.S. congressmembers are scheduled to leave Washington, D.C. on Dec. 14 for a three-week holiday break, with no deal in sight.

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