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Biden urges Congress to pass Senate aid package

U.S. President Joe Biden has called on lawmakers to swiftly pass a bipartisan Senate agreement addressing foreign aid and border policy. In a White House press release published on February 4, President Biden urged the Senate to send the $60 billion Ukraine support bill to his desk for immediate signing. The bill, resulting from months of closed-door negotiations in the Senate, is slated for a vote no later than February 7. If approved, it will enact stringent restrictions on immigration and asylum at the southern border. Republican lawmakers, linking aid to Ukraine with changes to U.S. border policy, have impeded additional security assistance to Kyiv since the fall of 2023.

Despite potential Senate approval, the legislation is expected to face significant opposition in the House of Representatives. Speaker Mike Johnson has warned that any agreement would be “dead on arrival.” The House plans to hold a vote next week on a standalone $17.6 billion aid package for Israel, excluding funding for Ukraine entirely. President Biden emphasized the vital role of the funding bill, allowing the United States to continue its crucial work alongside global partners in supporting Ukraine’s freedom and defending against Russia’s aggression.

Urging Congress to swiftly pass the funding bill, Biden stated that failure to curb Russian President Vladimir Putin’s appetite for power and control in Ukraine could lead to broader consequences for the United States. The call for action comes as U.S. officials previously warned of a funding gap for Ukraine without congressional intervention, particularly concerning as the country enters its third year of war under persistent Russian drone and missile attacks.

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