Skip to Content

White House says funding for Ukraine is running out in stark warning to Congress

By Aileen Graef and Betsy Klein, CNN

(CNN) — The White House is issuing a stark warning Congress that the US will “kneecap Ukraine on the battlefield” if funding is not approved.

Though the Biden administration has been pushing for additional aid for the war-torn country for months, Monday’s letter marks an intensified urgency for what President Joe Biden has described as a matter of the future of the world’s democracies.

While Congress remains at an impasse over Ukraine funding, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young wrote that the US is “nearly out of time” to meet the needs of the moment and a failure to secure an agreement will present critical national security risks.

“I want to be clear: without congressional action, by the end of the year we will run out of resources to procure more weapons and equipment for Ukraine and to provide equipment from U.S. military stocks. There is no magical pot of funding available to meet this moment. We are out of money — and nearly out of time,” Young said in a letter Monday to congressional leadership.

Young stressed the risks of not approving funding and said cutting off US weapons and equipment increases the “likelihood of Russian military victories” and continued funding of Ukraine is key to avoiding a larger conflict in the region.

“I must stress that helping Ukraine defend itself and secure its future as a sovereign, democratic, independent, and prosperous nation advances our national security interests,” she said.

In October, Biden requested more than $100 billion for national security, including $61.4 billion for Ukraine and $14.3 billion for Israel, urging Congress to pass the supplemental bill as a “comprehensive, bipartisan agreement.”

The administration’s request also includes $9.15 billion in funding for humanitarian aid, $7.4 billion for Taiwan and the Indo-Pacific region and $13.6 billion to address security at the US-Mexico border.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a November letter to his Democratic colleagues that he will bring a national security package to the floor that ties together Israel and Ukraine funding as soon as this week.

House Speaker Mike Johnson and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have insisted that GOP support for more Ukraine funding is contingent on tightening immigration laws amid growing concerns about security at the US-Mexico border. Schumer noted that negotiations over the border piece of the package continued over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Senate negotiations over the border talks hit a major snag over the weekend as Democrats claim Republicans were pushing for policies that too closely resembled the House’s immigration bill, HR2.

Although it may not be the end of the talks entirely, the negotiations are at a critical impasse that could imperil the ability to pass Ukraine and Israel aid through both chambers of Congress, three sources familiar with the talks told CNN.

Punchbowl News was first to report the impasse.

A Democratic source told CNN that when it became clear that Republicans were pushing for changes that too closely resembled the House GOP’s immigration bill, talks didn’t resume.

“We just got to a point where this negotiation just wasn’t a negotiation anymore,” one Democratic source said.

This story has been updated with additional details.

CNN’s Lauren Fox contributed to this report.

™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

Article Topic Follows: CNN - US Politics

Jump to comments ↓

CNN Newsource


KIFI Local News 8 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content