Foreign Aid Package Sparks Controversy
Republican Senator Johnson has publicly rejected the Senate border bill, calling it “worse than expected.” The bill includes $60 billion for Ukraine, $14.1 billion for Israel, and aid for Indo-Pacific allies. Johnson intends to put $17.6 billion in emergency funding for Israel in a standalone bill up for a vote. He expressed his dissatisfaction with the bill, stating, “This bill won’t come close to ending the border catastrophe the President has created.”
Dead on Arrival
Johnson firmly declared that if the bill reaches the House, it will be “dead on arrival.” This echoes his previous comments before the text of the agreement was released. He had written to House Republicans, stating that if rumors about the contents of the draft proposal were true, it would be dead on arrival in the House anyway. House Majority Leader Scalise also confirmed that the Senate bill would not receive a vote in the lower chamber.
Border Security Concerns
Republicans have become skeptical of the bipartisan talks surrounding the border deal. They argue that President Biden already has the necessary resources to address the border situation and does not need new legislation. Some Republicans also expressed reluctance to support the bill, fearing it would give Biden a political win in an election year. Former President Trump has urged GOP lawmakers to reject the border deal unless they receive what he believes is necessary to address the “invasion” of illegal immigrants.
Senator Lankford, the Republican point person on the border deal, responded to Johnson’s criticism by expressing confusion. He stated that he didn’t understand how the bill could be worse than what House Republicans expected, as it includes provisions such as border wall construction, deportation flights, and increased resources for immigration enforcement. Lankford emphasized that the bill aims to achieve zero illegal crossings per day, contrary to claims that it would allow 5,000 illegal crossings.
The Senate is expected to vote on the package as early as Wednesday, with the bill still facing opposition and controversy from Republican lawmakers.