In October 2023, the White House submitted a request to Congress for a new supplemental aid package. The proposed legislation included assistance to Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan, as well as US border security.

For nearly four months, members of Congress debated the foreign aid bill. But before it could pass, several Republicans in the House of Representatives and Senate argued that additional assistance could not be sent to America’s allies and partners without addressing national security matters within the United States. Republicans and Democrats then wrote and rewrote the legislation addressing these issues. But ultimately, a deal on border security fell through.

The Senate then took matters into its own hands and voted on a stand-alone aid package that would address foreign aid to Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan without border security reforms. The bill had strong bipartisan support, and it passed. The legislation now sits with the House. If passed, the United States would send this assistance to its allies and partners overseas.

Advertisement

But several House Republicans, including House Speaker Mike Johnson, continue to stall. This group of representatives has stated they will not be pressed to pass the foreign aid package and they believe there is “no rush” to pass this legislation. While Speaker Johnson and a set of House Republicans continue to play party politics over the foreign aid package, thousands have died in Ukraine and the Middle East. In other words, inaction has cost many lives.

US House to Separate Vote on Long-Delayed Ukraine and Israel Aid
Other Topics of Interest

US House to Separate Vote on Long-Delayed Ukraine and Israel Aid

The Senate passed a $95 billion package for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan in February. Republicans have been blocking the vote in the House and now want to delay further with four separate votes.

Now, some House members have had enough. According to recent reports, House Democrats are preparing to introduce a motion so that aid to these American allies and partners can be delivered. What would this entail?

Known as a discharge petition, the process allows the House to vote on a piece of legislation without it needing to be considered and cleared by various congressional committees. As such, it would also bypass the Speaker of the House, meaning the bill can be presented to the floor for a vote. Currently, there are 435 members in the House of Representatives. For a discharge petition to be successful, 218 members – a simple majority – or more must sign the petition.

Advertisement

According to the House of Representatives website, as of Feb. 29, there are 219 Republican members of the House and 213 Democratic members of the House. There are three vacancies. In this case, to reach 218 votes, all 213 Democrats would need to vote in favor of the discharge petition. The Democrats would then need five Republicans to sign the motion to pass.

Several authorities believe the votes are there. The news broke on Feb. 22 when New Jersey Representative Bill Pascrell, Jr. stated that the “votes are there” for the discharge to pass. American news magazine Newsweek also recently reported that the “votes are there” for the discharge to succeed.

Now, after nearly five months of waiting, it appears a House vote on foreign aid may become a reality. According to Axios, Pennsylvania Representative Brian Fitzpatrick is “preparing an effort” to push the motion through. He, in addition to a few other Republicans, is ready to break from Speaker Johnson to ensure that Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan get the aid they need. In other words, there appear to be enough members willing to sign the motion so that the bill can be brought to the floor.

Advertisement

On the surface, this is a good sign for America’s allies and partners overseas. But there is a catch. While there may be enough Republicans and Democrats ready to sign the motion, the process requires time. According to Axios, the House would require 30 days to be in session before it can be forced to the floor. Should there continue to be delays in this supplemental aid package, then this suggests that the earliest the House could vote on this bill would be in late March.

In short, a motion to force through the new supplemental aid package is underway. If successful, America’s allies and partners will finally receive the critical aid they need to defend themselves. But the bad news is that the process will still take additional time – at least five months before the new legislation is passed.

Now is the time to pressure the House to finally pass this bill. Thousands have already died since this bill was first introduced in October 2023. How many more individuals need to die before it is finally passed on the House floor?

Mark Temnycky is an accredited freelance journalist covering Eurasian affairs and a nonresident fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center. He can be found on X @MTemnycky

Advertisement
To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Comments (4)

https://www.kyivpost.com/assets/images/author.png
David
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

The snail's pace at which all these actions are taking is giving Putin too much room for advancement. It is a shame that the US has been influenced too much by Russian propaganda.

https://www.kyivpost.com/assets/images/author.png
darrenp
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

Its been said that politicians have been accomplices to killings in their decisions. With Speaker Johnson, he stands alone in being responsible for 100s if not 1000s of deaths! Men, women and children and their families permanently destroyed!
Mr Johnson, as a man of God that you claim to be... you will have stand before God on this and (as your faith states) face the eternity where you shall spend.

https://www.kyivpost.com/assets/images/author.png
John
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

I wished Clinton had not negotiated away Ukraine's former nuclear defence. I wish Obama had done more after Crimea was stolen. I wished putinrump had not intentionally interfered with his USA Administrations's intent to support Ukraine during his disastrous term. I wish Russians not broken their Budapest Memorandum terms.



I'm sure some putin paid MRGA troll will shortly singularly blame the one American President who approved the most USA funding support to date ....actually every single dime presently available to the Biden administration...all towards Ukraines' support. His desire to send more is now stalled by MRGA minions in the US House.

MRGA trolls will no doubt bring up the former 'H.R. 2 The Border Security Act' that failed to pass of many good reasons, but not mentioned they subsequently declined (at 'putinrumps' last minute command) the most significant Senate GOP negotiated immigrant restrictive controls that the USA has yet adopted.

It does not matter what putinrumps' MRGA holds Ukraine Aid hostage for. His end goal has always been to support master putin.

Godspeed booting out MRGA's Mike Johnson to FINALLY, AFTER 5 MONTHS DELAY support Ukraine again.

https://www.kyivpost.com/assets/images/author.png
LM
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

If you want aid to flow fast then Chuck Schumer needs to put H.R. 2 The Border Security Act which was passed last May to a vote in the Senate. If the Senate approved and Biden signed this into law then aid would flow almost immediately as Ukraine, Taiwan and Israel is being leverage for this bill.

https://www.kyivpost.com/assets/images/author.png