The legislation provides money for military and humanitarian aid, including funding to assist Ukrainian military and national security forces, help replenish stores of US equipment sent to Ukraine, and provide public health and medical support for Ukrainian refugees.
Aid to Ukraine has been a rare area of bipartisan consensus on Capitol Hill with many Democrats and Republicans rallying around calls to help the embattled nation.
Not all lawmakers are on board with the push to send an additional $40 billion in aid to Ukraine, however. Some Republican senators have taken issue with the high price tag of the legislation and the fact that the cost is not offset, and have expressed concerns that European countries are not contributing enough funds.
Eleven Republican senators voted against final passage of the bill: Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, John Boozman of Arkansas, Mike Braun of Indiana, Mike Crapo of Idaho, Bill Hagerty of Tennessee, Josh Hawley of Missouri, Mike Lee of Utah, Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, Roger Marshall of Kansas, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Tommy Tuberville of Alabama.
Ahead of the vote, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell rebuked lawmakers “concerned about the cost” of helping Ukraine, making clear he thinks that voting against the roughly bill is a big mistake.
“Anyone concerned about the cost of supporting a Ukrainian victory should consider the much larger cost should Ukraine lose,” he said in remarks on the Senate floor.
What’s in the bill
The bill includes an increase in presidential drawdown authority funding from the $5 billion the Biden administration originally requested to $11 billion. Presidential drawdown authority funding allows the administration to send military equipment and weapons from US stocks.
The bill also provides $6 billion in Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative funding, another way the Biden administration has been providing Ukraine with military assistance. The funding allows the administration to buy weapons from contractors and then provide those weapons to Ukraine, and as a result does not draw directly from US stocks.
According to a fact sheet from House Democrats, the funding will be used to assist Ukrainian military and national security forces and will go toward weapons, equipment, training, logistics and intelligence support as well as other needs.
There will also be roughly $9 billion to help restock US equipment that has been sent to Ukraine, which comes as many lawmakers have raised concerns about replacing US stocks of weapons the US is giving to Ukraine, especially stingers and javelin missiles.
To address humanitarian needs, the bill will include $900 million to bolster refugee assistance, including housing, trauma support and English language instruction for Ukrainians fleeing the country.
The measure provides an additional $54 million that will be used for public health and medical support for Ukrainian refugees.
Ukraine aid delayed in Senate
Bipartisan Senate leaders had hoped to approve the emergency funding bill last week to swiftly send billions in military aid to Ukraine as the war enters almost its third month.
Paul has demanded that language be added to the bill…