US House passes $95-B aid to Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan; threatens TikTok



WASHINGTON – The US House of Representatives on Saturday passed a USD95 billion aid package for Ukraine, Israel, and other US allies overseas.

House Speaker Mike Johnson unveiled a plan to hold votes on four separate foreign aid bills, to later come together into a package, a move that has angered some far-right House Republicans.

Besides aid for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan, the fourth bill includes other national security priorities, including a possible TikTok ban, a provision to help pay for aid by using seized Russian assets, and sanctions and other measures to confront Russia, China and Iran.

First, the House, voting 360 against 58, approved to effectively ban TikTok in the US -- if it not bought by a US company.

At the same time, the House overwhelmingly passed a measure to provide aid to Taiwan and Indo-Pacific allies, with a vote of 385-34.

On a vote of 311-112, the House passed the USD60.8 billion aid bill to aid Ukraine as it continues to fight off Russia’s war that began in February 2022.

With the passage of that bill, the Democrats cheered and waved Ukrainian flags and chanted "Ukraine."

The delay in passing the Ukraine aid has led to fears that the US would let Russia win the war, as Ukraine lacked the means and firepower to fight off Russia’s superior numbers and weapons.

Finally, the House passed USD26 billion in aid for Israel with a vote of 366-58, wrapping up its work on the four-bill foreign aid package.

The Senate is expected to pass the measure next week, after which President Joe Biden has pledged to sign it into law.

Following the passage of the bills, Biden thanked Johnson, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, and the bipartisan coalition of lawmakers in the House for putting national security first.

“I urge the Senate to quickly send this package to my desk so that I can sign it into law and we can quickly send weapons and equipment to Ukraine to meet their urgent battlefield needs,” he said in a statement.

At least three far-right Republicans have threatened to unseat Johnson over his bringing the bills to the floor for a vote. (Anadolu)