Thursday, August 17, 2023

Biden’s $40 billion Emergency Spending Request Gives $13 Billion More in Military Aid to Ukraine; — and $3.9B for Migrant, Fentanyl Crises

AP Photo/Alex Goodlett
Biden’s $40 billion emergency spending request gives $13 billion more in military aid to Ukraine:
President Biden asked Congress on Thursday for $40 billion in emergency spending through the end of this year, including $24 billion more for Ukraine — funding that would sidestep recently enacted budget caps and set up a clash with Republicans over more aid for Kyiv’s war against Russia.
The proposed Ukraine aid includes $13.1 billion for military assistance and replenishing Defense Department stockpiles depleted by the war effort. Also proposed is $200 million to counter the “destabilizing” impact of the Wagner Group, whose thousands of mercenaries have been a key part of Russia’s ground war.
The president requested another $4 billion for enforcement at the southern U.S. border, although administration officials say Mr. Biden’s border plan works. A $12 billion request for disaster relief includes extended pay for firefighters battling wildfires.
The U.S. has spent roughly $100 billion on the war in Eastern Europe, and polls show eroding American support for the growing overseas commitment of taxpayer dollars.
“The administration is requesting supplemental security, economic and humanitarian assistance funding that would support Ukraine as well as countries and vulnerable populations worldwide impacted by Russia’s unprovoked and brutal invasion of Ukraine,” White House Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda D. Young told House Speaker Kevin McCarthy in a letter Thursday.
Many conservative House Republicans are resisting more funding for Ukraine without stricter oversight. Mr. McCarthy has said he would not allow a vote on more aid to Ukraine if it bypasses the $886 billion defense spending cap set in May as part of the debt limit agreement with Mr. Biden. The deal caused a temporary rebellion against the speaker by some House Republicans. --->READ MORE HERE
Biden wants $20.6B more for Ukraine — and $3.9B for migrant, fentanyl crises:
President Biden is asking Congress to approve another $20.6 billion to support Ukraine in its war against Russia, despite mounting public opposition — more than five times the $3.9 billion he wants for US border security, migrant processing and anti-fentanyl efforts.
The new funding requests were announced Thursday ahead of an anticipated budget showdown in late September, when House GOP conservatives are expected to demand cuts in exchange for avoiding a partial government shutdown.
At least some of the border-related funds would help sponsor care for migrants released at the US-Mexico frontier following New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ increasingly frustrated pleas for federal help.
The Ukraine request follows $113 billion in congressional appropriations last year to support the war-torn Eastern European country.
The scope of the Ukraine-specific supplemental request was not immediately clear. The Associated Press reported that Biden would seek “$13 billion in emergency aid to Ukraine,” but the White House budget office later clarified the amount was higher.
A budget official told The Post that Ukraine-specific requests total $20.6 billion.
“The president has reaffirmed that we will stand with Ukraine as it defends its sovereignty for as long as it takes,” a Biden administration official said on a press call.
Charts provided to the press showed $24 billion in US requests for Ukraine conflict spending and other international objectives — including $9.5 billion for equipment for Ukraine and replenishment of US stockpiles, $3.6 billion in military and intelligence support for Ukraine and $7.3 billion for economic, humanitarian and other financial assistance to Ukraine and neighboring countries. --->READ MORE HERE
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