The US Senate will convene again on Thursday to vote on a standalone supplemental funding bill aimed at providing significant aid to Ukraine and Israel. This move follows the failure of a bipartisan border and national security package to advance on Wednesday.
The proposed foreign aid package, similar to the bipartisan bill, encompasses military assistance for Ukraine, security support for Israel, and humanitarian aid for civilians in Ukraine, Gaza, and the West Bank. Notably, the bill excludes the US border security measures outlined in the bipartisan proposal. However, there’s potential for some Republican senators to seek the addition of border provisions through an amendment process.
In a preliminary vote held on Wednesday, 58 members supported advancing the foreign aid package, falling short of the 60 votes required for approval. As a result, the bill currently lacks sufficient support to pass in the Senate.
Facing uncertainty over the level of support for the bill, senators engaged in extensive debates during the initial vote, which remained open for four hours. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced plans to reconvene on Thursday to hold the decisive vote, affording Republican colleagues additional time to deliberate.
Schumer’s decision followed the earlier setback in advancing the bipartisan border bill, which failed to garner the necessary 60 votes. Notably, Schumer initially backed the bill’s advancement but later changed his vote, strategically positioning for potential reconsideration in the future.
In a floor speech preceding the vote, Schumer criticized Republicans for obstructing the bipartisan bill, attributing their opposition to political motivations aligned with former President Donald Trump. Schumer accused Senate Republicans of prioritizing Trump’s interests over national concerns, particularly regarding border security.
The upcoming Senate vote on the standalone foreign aid package underscores ongoing efforts to address critical international priorities amid political tensions and partisan divides.