Biden urges House to take up Ukraine and Israel aid package: “Pass this bill immediately”

Senate passes $95 billion foreign aid package

Senate passes $95 billion foreign aid package, large hurdles remain in House


Washington — President Biden urged House Republicans to “immediately” take up a $95 billion foreign aid bill that includes assistance to Ukraine and Israel after the Senate passed the measure early Tuesday, saying that “there’s no question” that it would pass if brought to the House floor.

“I call on the speaker to let the full House speak its mind and not allow a minority of the most extreme voices in the House to block this bill even from being voted on,” the president said in remarks at the White House, which came hours after the Senate’s 70-29 vote to approve the measure. “This is a critical act for the House to move.”

Mr. Biden said the Senate “came together to send a message of unity to the world,” adding that “it’s time for the House Republicans to do the same thing, to pass this bill immediately.”

President Biden speaks about the Senate passage of aid for Ukraine in the State Dining Room of the White House on Feb. 13, 2024.
President Biden speaks about the Senate passage of aid for Ukraine in the State Dining Room of the White House on Feb. 13, 2024.

JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

The bill would provide tens of billions of dollars in aid to U.S. allies, including about $60 billion for Ukraine and $14.1 billion for Israel, along with around $9.2 billion for humanitarian assistance in Gaza. A bipartisan group of senators coalesced around the package on Tuesday morning, propelling it to passage. But recent criticism from House Speaker Mike Johnson has thrown its prospects in the lower chamber into question. 

Mr. Biden urged the House to move forward with the legislation “with urgency” in a statement after the Senate approved the foreign aid bill on Tuesday morning, saying that “we cannot afford to wait any longer.” 

“The costs of inaction are rising every day, especially in Ukraine,” the president said, noting reports that Ukrainian troops are running out of ammunition in their fight against Russia.

“There are those who say American leadership and our alliances and partnerships with countries around the world do not matter. They do,” Mr. Biden said. “If we do not stand against tyrants who seek to conquer or carve up their neighbors’ territory, the consequences for America’s national security will be significant.”


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