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US Senate to vote on Ukraine aid package next week

by Dmytro Basmat December 15, 2023 1:30 AM 2 min read
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer at a press conference on Nov. 15, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
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The U.S. Senate will reconvene next week to vote on a proposed Ukraine-Israel aid package, delaying the Senate's scheduled holiday recess, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced on Dec. 14.

“Members need to be here next week. We have to get this done," said Schumer from the Senate floor.

Delaying its holiday break set to begin on Dec. 15, the Senate will reconvene on Monday in hopes that the weekend will give negotiators enough time to reach an agreement on the $105 billion combined Israel-Ukraine aid package proposed by the Biden administration.

President Joe Biden has been urging lawmakers to pass a supplemental aid package to provide $61.4 billion in aid as Ukraine military funding continues to run dry. Of the $111 billion so far approved by Congress to support Ukraine, the Defense Department has used 97% of its $62.3 billion budget for Ukraine, according to the White House.

Support over the aid package has turned into a political battle as many Republican lawmakers refuse to support additional funding for Ukraine, tying opposition to the bill with demands to strengthen migration border policy at the U.S. border with Mexico.

On Thursday, Republican Senator Tom Cotton said negotiators had made progress but remained "very far apart."

Earlier this month, President Biden indicated that he was open to concessions on border security to strike a deal with Republicans, but some Democrats have criticized the White House's proposal.

A successful vote in the Senate would also have to agreed upon by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives for the the bill to pass. House lawmakers left Washington to begin their scheduled holiday on Thursday.

Ukraine war latest: Zelensky visits US military base in Germany
Key developments on Dec. 14: * Zelensky arrives in Germany, visits US military base * Explosions heard in Kyiv, Khmelnytskyi Oblast in Russian missile attack on Ukraine * European Council agrees to open accession talks with Ukraine, Moldova * Putin: Russia allocating $11 billion per year to ’in…
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