America is last!
The US Senate has cast a controversial vote, pushing through a massive $95 billion foreign aid package that supports Ukraine, Israel, Gaza and Taiwan, but notably omits any provision to bolster US border infrastructure.
In a final 67-32 vote, the Senate crossed party lines, with several RINO senators joining Democrats to advance the foreign aid bill.
Republicans who joined Democrats in voting yes include:
- Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
- Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
- Bill Cassidy (R-LA)
- Roger Wicker (R-MS)
- Todd Young (R-IN)
- Susan Collins (R-ME)
- Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV)
- John Kennedy (R-LA)
- John Thune (R-SD)
- Dan Sullivan (R-AK)
- Mitt Romney (R-UT)
- Joni Ernst (R-IA)
- Mike Rounds (R-SD)
- Thom Tillis (R-NC)
- John Cornyn (R-TX)
- Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
- Jerry Morán (R-KS)
According Jamie Dupree, Capitol CorrespondentThe bill “is likely to pass the Senate, perhaps Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.”
According to CNN’s Manu Raju, Senator Mike Rounds (R-SD) explicitly expressed his support for final passage of the bill, while Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) is non-committal.
67-32, Senate breaks filibuster and opens debate on $95.3 billion emergency aid package for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan. Bill will be in the room until next week sometime. It is unclear whether he would get 60 votes to advance to final approval.
The Republican Party votes for ‘yes’ a moment ago: McConnell,…
-Manu Raju (@mkraju) February 8, 2024
This comes after Republican senators voted Wednesday against advancing a compromised ‘border security bill’ that would have allocated more money to foreign countries while largely ignoring the US border.
Initially, the $118.28 billion supplemental national security package includes:
“A motion to proceed with the package failed by a vote of 49-50, with the majority of the Senate Republican conference voting against it. Republican Senators Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), James Lankford (Okla.) and Mitt Romney (Utah) voted to advance the measure,” The Hill reported.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said he will move forward with a backup plan.
“Schumer told members of his caucus and the White House last week that if Republicans botched the bipartisan, supplemental border deal, he had prepared a plan to use the reconsideration motion to force Republicans to vote on the ( supplementary reforms without borders. ” the assistant said, according to The Hill.
In a statement to the media, Schumer said: “First, Republicans said they would only provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine and Israel at the border. Then they said they wouldn’t do it with the border. Well, we’re going to give you both options. We’ll take either one. We just hope they can accept something.”
“We found out about a week ago when Trump intervened and knew he wanted to be a politician and said he would prefer chaos at the border because he thinks it helps him electorally. We knew we might have to have a second option. “So I called the White House and told my group that if, unfortunately, the big supplemental bill failed, we would do everything but the border,” he added.
On Thursday, Schumer made good on his promise and the Democratic-led Senate introduced a streamlined bill aimed at providing aid to Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan, but not to the southern border that is currently overrun by illegal immigrants.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), who authored the bill, hailed the vote as a critical moment for U.S. national security.
“President, it is very good that the Senate voted to proceed with the national security supplement. This is a good first step. This bill is essential for our national security, for the security of our friends in Ukraine, in Israel, for humanitarian aid for innocent civilians in Gaza and Taiwan. The bill also strengthens our military at a time when they need it most. Not passing this bill would only embolden autocrats like Putin and Xi, who want nothing more than the decline of the United States,” Schumer said.
“Now that we are on the bill, we hope to reach an agreement with our Republican colleagues on the amendments. Democrats have always been clear that we support a fair and reasonable amendment process. During my time as Majority Leader, I have presided over more votes on amendments than the Senate conducted in the four years of the previous administration. For the information of senators, we will continue working on this bill until the work is finished.”
A small step in the right direction.
A day after House Republicans rejected a bipartisan border security and foreign aid bill, senators voted, by a final count of 67 to 32, to begin debate on a $95 billion aid package. dollars to finance Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan and humanitarian aid… pic.twitter.com/G3YXckL6BJ
—Yasmina (@yasminalombaert) February 8, 2024
NBC News reported:
The 67-32 vote means the Senate can begin considering the $95 billion package, although the next steps are uncertain and it is not yet clear what the votes will be for final passage in the chamber.
While nearly all Democrats favor its passage, Senate Republicans are divided over whether to approve the bill or block it. They held a morning meeting to discuss their options and possible demands for amendments to conclude its approval quickly.
If the bill passes the Democratic-led Senate, it would move to the GOP-controlled House, where prospects are also uncertain. Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., did not indicate Wednesday whether he would allow a floor vote, saying, “We’ll see what the Senate does.”
Senators prefer to conclude the aid package before a two-week recess begins next week. After that, Congress’ priority will be a government funding deadline in early March.
In a statement to CNN’s Manu Raju, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) criticized the proposed legislation for being inferior to existing laws. His stance underscores a fundamental dispute over national priorities, particularly in terms of border security.
Manu Raju wrote in X: “Rand Paul told me he will force the Senate to prolong the process on the $95 billion relief package. “I think we should stay here as long as necessary. “If that takes a week or a month, I will force you to stay here to discuss why you think the Ukraine border is more important than the United States border.” Paul voted to block the bill with the bipartisan border agreement, arguing it was “worse” than the current law. “Any senator can object and force time-consuming votes.”
Rand Paul told me he will force the Senate to prolong the process on the $95 billion relief package. “I think we should stay here as long as necessary. If that takes a week or a month, I’ll force you to stay here to discuss why you think the Ukraine border is more important than…
-Manu Raju (@mkraju) February 8, 2024