US Senate advances $95 billion bill for aid to Israel and Ukraine
Pending House approval, legislation would allocate $14 billion for Israel’s war against Hamas and $61 billion for Ukraine’s war against Russia
By REUTERS and TOI STAFF |
A $95.34 billion bill that includes aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan advanced in the US Senate on Thursday after Republicans blocked compromise legislation that included a long-sought overhaul of immigration policy.
Senators backed a procedural motion by 67-32, exceeding the 60-vote threshold to advance the bill. Seventeen Republicans voted in favor, in a surprising shift after they blocked the broader bill on Wednesday.
“This is a good first step. This bill is essential for our national security, for the security of our friends in Ukraine, in Israel, for humanitarian aid for innocent civilians in Gaza, and for Taiwan,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in the Senate after the vote.
There was no immediate word on when the 100-member chamber would consider final passage, as some senators said they expected to remain in session during the weekend if necessary.
“We are going to keep working on this bill until the job is done,” Schumer said.
The Democratic-led Senate took up the security aid bill after Republicans on Wednesday blocked a broader measure that also included reforms of border security and immigration policy that a bipartisan group of senators had negotiated for months.