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Progress Toward Potential Passage of US Assistance to Ukraine Gains Momentum

On Thursday, the U.S. Congress made significant strides toward resolving a prolonged deadlock, edging closer to voting on legislation aimed at providing substantial security assistance to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan. This progress occurred amidst heated debates preceding a scheduled weekend vote on the measure.

Members of the Republican-led House of Representatives Rules Committee engaged in extensive discussions regarding a package of four bills, focusing on security aid for the aforementioned nations and additional measures such as sanctions and potential actions concerning TikTok and seized Russian assets.

After more than two months since the Democratic-led Senate’s approval of a $95 billion security assistance package for Ukraine, Israel, and U.S. partners in the Indo-Pacific, House Speaker Mike Johnson unveiled House bills mirroring the Senate’s provisions. These bills allocate $61 billion to address the conflict in Ukraine, including significant sums for replenishing U.S. weapons, supporting Israel with humanitarian aid, and bolstering security efforts in the Indo-Pacific region.

Johnson indicated that the House would vote on the bills as early as Saturday, despite resistance from some factions within his party. With Republicans holding a narrow majority, Democratic support may be necessary for passage.

The hardline House Freedom Caucus voiced opposition to the security package, while Representative Ralph Norman advocated using Ukraine aid as “leverage” for stricter immigration policies. However, other lawmakers expressed confidence in the bills’ eventual passage, citing bipartisan support in the Senate and the urgent need for assistance in Ukraine.

Representative Michael McCaul highlighted the critical importance of aid to Ukraine, emphasizing the dire consequences of inaction, including the risk of Russian encroachment. McCaul’s sentiments were echoed by Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, who assured Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal of the Senate’s commitment to expeditiously address the issue.

House Democrats deliberated on the security bills during a conference meeting, with party leaders awaiting further details from the Rules committee before issuing an official statement.

As discussions continue and the legislative process unfolds, the focus remains on providing essential support to Ukraine and advancing measures to safeguard regional stability and security.

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