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Hill: Ukraine aid to have “overwhelming support” in Congress after recess – US House Intel chair

US House Intelligence Chair Mike Turner anticipates overwhelming congressional support for additional Ukraine funding, despite internal divisions delaying aid, after 9 April when Congress reconvenes from the Easter recess.
Congress of the United States.
The Congress of the United States. Photo:
Hill: Ukraine aid to have “overwhelming support” in Congress after recess – US House Intel chair

On 31 March, US House Intelligence Chair Mike Turner predicted “overwhelming support” in Congress for additional funding for Ukraine, despite sharp divisions among lawmakers that have stalled aid for the nation. Turner, speaking to CBS News, said Speaker Mike Johnson has “made clear” his support for Ukraine and indicated it would be a priority when Congress returns from its holiday recess, according to The Hill.

The foreign aid package has been stalled since last fall due largely to opposition from the far-right Republicans in the US Congress, suspending military assistance that Kyiv badly needs to fight Russia. The Senate passed a $95 billion foreign aid bill, including $60+ billion for Ukraine, last month with bipartisan support, yet Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson made clear he wouldn’t give it a vote on the House floorstating on 14 February that the House will not feel “rushed” to pass the package. Then Johnson had withheld the bill until the government funding issue was resolved, despite urgent requests from Kyiv. Michael McCaul, chair of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee, stated that Johnson is committed to holding the vote sometime after 9 April when Congress reconvenes from the break.

The Speaker has made very clear statements that when we get back, it’s the next top agenda, after having just passed all the bills that fund the federal government,” Turner said. “I believe this is going to have overwhelming support in Congress, and we’ll put a bill on the president’s desk.”

CBS News asked Turner whether the bill would garner strong support from GOP members or if it would require additional measures such as a loan payment plan or border security provisions:

“I think there already is significant and very strong support among Republicans and certainly across Americans, across the country,” he said.

The Hill notes questions persist about how Johnson will address the sensitive issue of aid to Ukraine, especially after his rejection last month of a Senate-passed foreign aid package that included $60 billion for Ukraine. He cited the absence of border security measures in the legislation and suggested providing aid to Ukraine as a loan.

Turner expects discussions on border security and aid structure, leading to a negotiated package. He expressed hope for progress before Congress’s upcoming week-long break later this month.

In a phone call with US House Speaker Mike Johnson on 28 March, Zelenskyy stressed the critical necessity of rapidly passing the $60+ billion Ukraine assistance bill that has been held up for months by Congressional Republicans.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy cautioned that without renewed US military assistance, Ukraine would be forced to retreat.

spokesperson for the US National Security Council, Adrienne Watson, released a statement following Russia’s night attack against the Ukrainian power grid on 29 March, urging the House to pass the Ukraine aid:

“To help Ukraine protect against these ongoing attacks, we need the House of Representatives to pass the bipartisan national security supplemental bill so we can send Ukraine more air defenses. Ukraine’s need is urgent, and we cannot afford any further delays,“ it reads.

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