In a bold and principled move, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) has announced his refusal to support any short-term spending package that includes additional funding for the Ukrainian war effort. With the federal government teetering on the brink of a potential shutdown, the Republican lawmaker is taking a stand for fiscal responsibility and the interests of the American people.
Making his position abundantly clear in an op-ed and during a Senate floor address, Paul emphasized that the federal government should not be held hostage for Ukraine funding.
“I will not consent to expedited passage of any spending measure that provides any more U.S. aid to Ukraine,” he firmly declared.
Today I'm putting congressional leadership & @POTUS on notice that I will oppose any effort to hold the federal government hostage for Ukraine funding. I will not consent to expedited passage of any spending measure that provides any more US aid to Ukraine.…
— Rand Paul (@RandPaul) September 20, 2023
Backing up his stance with facts, Paul pointed out that the United States has already sent a staggering $113 billion in aid to Ukraine, averaging out to approximately “$6.8 billion per month—or $223 million per day.” This hefty financial commitment has raised concerns about the sustainability of America’s involvement in an open-ended conflict.
Paul aptly described the situation as “yet another endless quagmire funded by the American taxpayer.” He highlighted a CNN poll from August, which revealed that a majority of Americans now oppose further congressional authorization of funding for Ukraine.
“The Senate leadership of both parties know this. That’s why they are trying to hold the federal government hostage by inserting the $24 billion aid request in a continuing resolution: to force our hand. Either we fund an endless war in Ukraine or the uniparty will shut down the federal government and make the American people suffer,” he wrote.
He deemed this maneuver a “clear dereliction of duty” and pledged to oppose any bill that includes funding for Ukraine.
Paul also raised valid concerns about corruption within Ukraine, citing the recent firing of six deputy defense ministers over corruption allegations. This follows the removal of Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov due to mishandled military contracts, indicating the need for greater oversight in the allocation of aid.
As the clock ticks down to Sept. 30, congressional leaders are racing to reach a deal on a continuing resolution that would keep the federal government funded. However, a contentious debate looms over whether an additional $24 billion should be granted in aid for Ukraine, as requested by President Joe Biden.
Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY)has advocated for more aid to Ukraine, and Democrat Senate Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) also supports increased funding for Ukraine. However, he has not confirmed whether he would attach it to the continuing resolution.