The US Senate took a crucial step on Sunday towards the adoption of significant new aid to Ukraine. However, the granting of this aid, eagerly awaited in Kyiv, risks encountering a categorical refusal from the Trumpist Republicans in the other chamber of Congress. This Sunday, the Senate, where the Democrats have a narrow majority, voted in favor of putting the text presented by the administration of Joe Biden to a vote, by 67 votes to 27. The bill provides in particular $60 billion for Ukraine and $14 billion for Israel against Hamas. The package also includes funds for a strategic ally of the United States, Taiwan. The date of the next vote in the upper house is not yet known, but it could be held at the beginning of the week. In the House of Representatives, where the Republicans have a narrow majority, the measure will face stiff opposition from right-wing elected officials.
Two years after the start of the Russian invasion, elected officials from the United States, the main military supporter of Ukraine, are unable to agree on the validation of new funds. The Democrats are, in the vast majority, in favor. The Republicans are divided between interventionist hawks, pro-Ukraine, and lieutenants of Donald Trump, who are much more isolationist. The latter strongly criticize the continuation of American aid to Ukraine, affirming in particular that their country should not continue to disburse tens of billions of dollars as long as the United States border with Mexico is not “secure”. But while the bill initially included a reform of migration policy, this was removed from the text having passed this crucial stage on Sunday.
On Sunday, eighteen Republican elected officials nevertheless supported the bill in the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stated, “Today, it is no exaggeration to say that the eyes of the world are on the American Senate.” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer also highlighted the rare fact that the vote is held on a Super Bowl Sunday, the very popular high mass of American football. The process remains fraught with pitfalls for the envelope which has become an issue in the presidential campaign.
Democratic President Joe Biden is urgently calling for these new funds, while his predecessor Donald Trump is increasing hostile declarations, while ensuring that if he were re-elected in November, he would resolve the war between Russia and Ukraine “in 24 hours, without explaining how. Joe Biden on Sunday described his comments as “distressing and dangerous”. Even without a mandate, the former president recently managed to torpedo the conclusion in Congress of a compromise on the package for Ukraine. And on Saturday, he threatened, if he returned to the White House, to no longer guarantee the protection of NATO countries against Russia if they did not pay their share, even saying that he would “encourage” Moscow to attack them.