War in Ukraine: Joe Biden stumbles again over Republican refusal to vote for aid to kyiv

" Certainly not "

War in Ukraine: Joe Biden stumbles again over Republican refusal to vote for aid to kyiv

" Certainly not ". House Republican Leader Mike Johnson sharply refused on Tuesday (Feb. 13) to allow any vote on the latest Ukraine aid bill, ignoring the president's earlier call American, Joe Biden.

The rejection of the speaker of the House torpedoes the envelope of 95 billion dollars (approximately 89 billion euros) in aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, approved Tuesday by the Senate, the upper house of Congress, it with a Democratic majority.

“I say to House Republicans: You have to choose. Will you stand up for freedom or side with terror and tyranny? Will you be with Ukraine or with Putin? Will you choose America or Trump? » launched the Democratic president on Tuesday during a short speech at the White House to convince the reluctant Republicans. In vain.

In the middle of an election year, the issue has turned into a standoff between Joe Biden and his predecessor in the White House, Donald Trump, while the two men are the big favorites to represent their camp in the November presidential election .

In battle order behind Donald Trump

The 81-year-old Democrat, in his speech on Tuesday, trashed his rival's recent comments on NATO. On Saturday, Donald Trump said he would “encourage” Russia to attack the countries of the Atlantic Defense Alliance if they did not pay their share. “It’s stupid, it’s undignified, it’s dangerous, it’s un-American,” said Joe Biden. “He believes [NATO] is a racketeering system. He does not understand that NATO is based on fundamental principles of freedom, security and sovereignty,” Joe Biden continued. “For Trump, principles do not count, everything is bargainable,” the American president said again.

But the Grand Old Party has already put itself in battle order behind Donald Trump. In the Senate with a Democratic majority, several Republicans voted in favor of aid to Ukraine, allowing the adoption of the text by qualified majority. But it's a completely different matter in the House of Representatives, with a Republican majority. Its president Mike Johnson, close to Donald Trump, has refused for months to examine the text without change on, on any other subject, the migration policy of the Biden administration. “National security begins with border security,” he insisted Tuesday.

The Republicans are demanding that aid to Ukraine be coupled with a tightening of migration policy, in a context of record arrivals at the border with Mexico. A compromise text to this effect was recently presented to the Senate. But the conservatives ultimately rejected it, saying it was not firm enough.

It's hard not to see the influence of Donald Trump, who made illegal immigration a major campaign theme and does not intend to give Joe Biden a political victory in the middle of an election year.

Military assistance interrupted since the end of December

The adoption of the text in the Senate was nevertheless welcomed on Tuesday by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky who said he was “grateful” to the American senators. “For us in Ukraine, continued American aid saves human lives from Russian terror” at a time when “we are fighting for freedom, democracy,” he said on the platform x.

The resumption of military assistance to Ukraine, interrupted since the end of December 2023, depends on this text negotiated in Congress. 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.

On Monday evening, Senator Lindsey Graham, until now one of the first Republican supporters of aid to Ukraine, announced that he would ultimately oppose the adoption of the new tranche of aid, preferring to instead a system of loans… “as President Trump suggested.” An illustration among many others of the influence of the Republican candidate in Congress.