New GOP Speaker calls on Biden to split $100 bn funding for Ukraine, Israel


US House Speaker Mike Johnson has urged President Joe Biden to split his USD 100 billion supplemental budget request into aid for both Ukraine and Israel, expressing concerns about Republican support for a Ukraine package, The Hill reported.

The new Republican Speaker Johnson explained his position during an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Thursday, stating, “I told the staff at the White House today that our consensus among House Republicans is that we need to bifurcate those issues.”

President Biden’s budget request includes USD 14 billion to support Israel’s efforts against Hamas in Gaza and USD 61 billion for Ukraine’s defence against Russia, along with funding for US border security and support for Taiwan.

While Ukraine funding has become a contentious issue among House Republicans, Johnson affirmed his support for Ukraine’s defence against Russia.

However, he emphasised the importance of fiscal responsibility, saying, “Now, we can’t allow Vladimir Putin to prevail in Ukraine, because I don’t believe it would stop there, and it would probably encourage and empower China to perhaps make a move on Taiwan. We have these concerns.”

“We’re not going to abandon them. But we have a responsibility, a stewardship responsibility, over the precious treasure of the American people,” he continued, adding, “And we have to make sure that the White House is providing the people with some accountability for the dollars.

He also condemned the Biden administration’s plan for the Ukraine war effort, saying the White House has not provided what the “endgame” is for continued support, as reported by The Hill.

House Republicans intend to propose a standalone USD 14 billion spending bill to assist Israel, aligning with the White House request. This proposal mirrors a bill introduced by a group of GOP senators in the Senate.

Israel has received broad bipartisan support for its actions against Hamas, which followed a surprise attack resulting in the death of 1,400 Israelis, mostly civilians.

Johnson emphasized the commitment to standing with Israel as a vital ally in the Middle East, saying, “One thing that House Republicans are resolved on is that we must stand with our most important ally in the Middle East, and that’s Israel. We will.”

However, he underscored the significance of responsible spending, saying, “We deeply care and are concerned about all nations of free people around the world, but we have to take care of our own house first, and so that’s also part of this delicate calculation and the decision,” The Hill reported.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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