Progress Made on Border Talks, Still No Compromise on Border, Ukraine Aid

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today on Capitol Hill, Senate leaders expressed some optimism about the ongoing border negotiations that have impacted aid for Ukraine, Israel and others. 

Congress has yet to deliver on the October request of President Biden to deliver over $60 billion for Ukraine, and billions more for Israel, Taiwan and humanitarian aid in Gaza.  

Republicans have been skeptical about sending more aid to Ukraine without addressing the southern border. They want to see certain Trump-era border policies, like the “Remain in Mexico” policy put back in place before they agree to more Ukraine aid.  

However, Democrats are not on board with many of those Trump-era policies, but they have said they’re open to finding compromise.  

Today, Senate leaders said negotiations have made progress, but that they’re not quite there yet. 

“We agree the border must be fixed. That is a broad consensus in our in our caucus,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D- NY). “We must succeed. Democrats, myself, remain totally committed to working with our Republican counterparts to reach an agreement.” 

“I think it’s pretty safe to say that we’ve made some significant progress, but we obviously aren’t there. This is not easy, but we’re working hard to get an outcome because the country needs it and the country needs it soon,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R- KY). 

The House left for the holidays last week. A deal on the border, as well as supplemental aid for Ukraine, is unlikely to occur before Christmas. If that’s the case, Sen. Schumer indicated Senate border negotiators will take a few days off, before they continue talks after the holidays.