Case study Funding for Ukraine

All Politics is Local

America first. is the reason given by a handful of super-conservative Republicans who are blocking $60 billion in US military aid that Ukraine desperately needs to keep fending off invading Russians. “We must take care of America’s needs first,” House Speaker Mike Johnson said on Feb. 27 2024, explaining why the House won’t vote on an aid bill for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan that the Senate already passed. 

The US failure to vote through a fresh military aid package for Ukraine had impact on the battlefield, Nato’s secretary general warned at the end of a defense ministers’ meeting. Jens Stoltenberg said he still believed Congress would eventually approve the stalled $60bn (£50bn) package, but his cautious remarks came as Nato officials warned Russia was making “significant gains”  in March 2024 near the frontline town of Avdiivka.

“The fact that the US has not been able to make a decision so far has already had consequences. It is impacting the flow of support,” the Nato chief told reporters in Brussels.

Republicans claim concerns about the Biden Administration's immigration policy and the status of the country's southern border with Mexico as the justification for blocking aid to Ukraine. Republicans decided to predicate their support for the Ukraine-Israel-Taiwan spending bill on Biden and the Democrats doing something about America's border migration. The Republicans sold it as "Why should we be helping Ukraine secure its borders when our own are wide open". This is an argument that resonates well in conservative parts of today's America.