The Biden Administration on Monday warned Congress that funding for Ukraine in its war against Russia is running out, urging the need to approve tens of billions of dollars in economic assistance to the U.S. ally.
In a letter to Congressional leaders that was released publicly, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young asserted that not continuing to fund Ukraine would “kneecap” its military, and that “if Ukraine’s economy collapses, they will not be able to keep fighting, full stop.”
“We are out of money—and nearly out of time,” Young wrote.
President Biden has requested $106 billion in new spending to help fund Israel in its war against Hamas, Ukraine in its war against Russia, and beefed-up security on the U.S.-Mexico border, but that request was not taken up by Congress when it passed its latest round of stopgap funding in mid-November.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) announced early last week that he plans to hold a vote on Biden’s request as soon as this week.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) have insisted that GOP support for more funding to Ukraine be contingent on tightening immigration laws.
Congress already has allocated $111 billion to assist Ukraine, including $67 billion in military procurement funding, $27 billion for economic and civil assistance and $10 billion for humanitarian aid. According to Young, all but about 3% of the military funding had been depleted by the middle of last month.
Meanwhile, the Republican-led House on Thursday passed a standalone $14.3 billion assistance package solely for Israel, despite Democrats’ insistence it has no future in the Senate, and the White House has promised a veto amid the Administration’s continued assistance that all the priorities be met.