WASHINGTON, D.C. – Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are looking to finalize a deal to help both Israel and Ukraine before the new year. Republicans are holding out their support unless a deal can be reached on stronger border policy.
After weeks of negotiations, members are still unable to move forward with supplemental funding for Ukraine. The White House is asking congress for billions in aid for Ukraine, which also includes aid for Taiwan and Israel. But the request is in a deadlock after republicans are hoping to tie in border security as part of the package.
“If we can find money to give to Ukraine, if we can find money to give to Israel, we sure as heck should be able to make sure our borders are safe and secure to begin with,” said Rep. Mike Kelly (R- PA).
The negotiations are taking place behind closed doors. President Biden said he’s willing to make changes to immigration policy as a compromise. Some changes could include humanitarian parole, asylum standards and fast-track deportation authority. The Senate is holding off their holiday break for now, staying in Washington to continue negotiations.
“Over the last few days, negotiations on a path forward to getting national security supplemental done have made good progress,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer (D- NY). “As I’ve said, if we believe something is important and urgent, we should stay and get the job done.”
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited with members last week hoping to regain sympathy for their cause. Asking members to continue supporting Ukraine. The White House said Ukraine doesn’t have time to waste in their war against Russia, pressing members to pass additional funding sooner rather than later.
“In just over the last 24, 48 hours, we’ve seen additional air strikes by Russia on critical infrastructure,” NSC Spokesperson John Kirby said last week. “And they’ll face more death and destruction to their families and to their homeland. They need our help and they need it right now.”