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Senate Poised to Progress Ukraine Aid Following Roller-Coaster House Battle

Ukraine War (Credits: Wall Street Journal)

The Senate is poised to take a remarkable step forward on Tuesday by advancing legislation to provide aid to Ukraine. This development marks a crucial development in Congress’s efforts to address the escalating crisis in Eastern Europe.

In a vote scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, Senators will initiate the first procedural step on the $95 billion aid package, triggering a 30-hour countdown toward a final vote.

If no deal on amendments is reached, the vote on the bill’s passage is expected to occur on Wednesday night. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer may allow the clock to run down instead of expediting the process.

US Senate (Credits: France 24)

One key factor influencing the Senate’s deliberations is the reluctance to grant a vote on amendments, particularly from Senator Bernie Sanders, related to the Israeli-Hamas conflict.

The Aid Bill Includes Provisions for Both Ukraine and Israel

Sanders has proposed amendments to condition military aid to Israel and restore funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) for its activities in Gaza. However, any alterations to the aid package would necessitate another vote in the House of Representatives, which is currently in recess.

Despite potential amendments, the aid package is anticipated to garner broad bipartisan support, with the House version already receiving overwhelming backing. Lawmakers from both parties have been advocating for additional aid to Ukraine, recognizing the urgent need to bolster Kyiv’s defenses in the ongoing Russian aggression.

The aid bill encompasses provisions not only for Ukraine but also for Israel and Taiwan and measures targeting Russian assets. While the road to securing this aid has been fraught with obstacles, including opposition from conservative factions and contentious negotiations, the escalating crises in Ukraine and Gaza have underscored the necessity of swift action.

Senate committee (Credits: Washington Blade)

House Speaker Mike Johnson’s efforts to overcome the challenges and rally support for the aid package have been instrumental in advancing the legislation despite internal party divisions and criticisms.

The aid package represents a crucial lifeline for Ukraine, which has faced dire shortages of ammunition and resources in its struggle against Russian forces.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has stressed the importance of expediting the delivery of assistance to bolster his country’s defense capabilities and prevent further escalation of the conflict.

With the Senate vote looming, Zelensky and Ukrainian officials hope swift action will translate into tangible support for their efforts on the front lines.

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