Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida on Wednesday came up short in his bid to deny more U.S. taxpayers’ dollars flowing to Ukraine.
But his effort to cut funding for the war against Russia is gaining steam.
As Politico reported Wednesday, the House voted down Gaetz’s measure to end American-funded “security assistance” to Ukraine by a 339-93 margin.
The vote came as lawmakers debated the Defense Department’s 2024 budget. According to Politico, the spending bill contained $300 million for the Pentagon’s Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative — a program launched after Russia forcibly annexed Crimea in 2014.
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That funding is separate from President Joe Biden’s request for $24 billion in emergency aid for Ukraine.
Gaetz noted that the U.S. has already funneled $115 billion to prop up Ukraine in its war against Russia. Wednesday’s vote came after a recent “60 Minutes” report that said in addition to Ukraine’s war machine, U.S. taxpayers were funding Ukrainian farmers, small business owners, and all 57,000 of that nation’s first-responders.
In a House floor speech, Gaetz said he wanted to ensure the federal government “sends no more” aid to Ukraine.
“$115 billion is an astonishing amount of money, especially when you consider our nation sits atop a $33 trillion debt,” Gaetz continued.
Yet despite all that spending, he added, “the massacres, the killing, and the deaths continue.”
“It does not make the United States stronger to borrow money from China and give it to Ukraine,” said Gaetz.
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He added that while America is being “invaded” by illegal immigrants, “we go spend all this money on the border of another country.”
“Enough is enough. I’m putting my countrymen first, and I don’t think we should send another nickel to Ukraine,” said Gaetz.
Although Gaetz’s defeat on this measure was decisive, the 93 votes on Wednesday were 23 more than he got in July when proposing a similar bill.
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