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‘No Accountability, No Plan to Victory’: Capitol Hill Bipartisan Bill Falls Apart

© AP Photo / Alex BrandonSpeaker-elect Rep. Mike Johnson, R-La., puts the gavel down before speaking at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2023.
Speaker-elect Rep. Mike Johnson, R-La., puts the gavel down before speaking at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2023. - Sputnik International, 1920, 08.02.2024
On Saturday, House Speaker Mike Johnson announced that Republicans would propose their Israel-only funding bill (H.R. 7217) as a rejection to the larger bipartisan bill. The Biden administration said that the Israel-only bill was a “cynical political maneuver” and “strongly [opposed] the ploy”.
Lawmakers in DC released a large bipartisan bill on Sunday. That bill aimed to reform immigration policy in a decade with $20 billion (out of $118 billion in total for funding for Ukraine and Israel). On Wednesday the US Senate blocked the bill, but is open to hearing a revised version of the legislation which includes Ukraine and Israel aid but not immigration reform.
On Wednesday, Gerry Wilkins, a political consultant and candidate for US House Alabama District 6, spoke with Sputnik’s Fault Lines. Wilkins said that US voters in Alabama aren’t interested in aiding Ukraine with “no accountability, no plan to victory”.
“I think Speaker Johnson has a very difficult time ahead. When you look at the majority in the House. But he does need to bring a standalone Israel bill, a standalone border security bill. And we've got to stop lumping all of this stuff together. I can tell you that the people do not want, in my district, to continue funding this Ukraine war with no accountability, no plan to victory,” Wilkins explained.
“That's just a nonstarter for people in Alabama, especially when we have an invasion going on at the southern border.”
The political consultant sounded off the steps that he would like the US government to take in addressing security at the US-Mexico border, including an end to what is called “catch and release”---a system in which an illegal immigrant is released to the community while they await hearings in immigration court instead of detaining them.
“We need to reimplement the stay in Mexico policy,” Wilkins urged. “We need to end catch and release. We need to activate the National Guard at all of our border states. And we need to put a stop to this. And we have the technology to do it. And then we need to go after these cartels that are perpetrating this human trafficking and this fentanyl that is just pouring into our country.”
Wilkins then reaffirmed that there is a strong allyship between the US and Israel which has been active since the Vietnam War. Despite a difference in politics between US President Joe Biden and Israeli Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the US has continued to funnel billions of dollars to aid Israel in their conflict at the Gaza Strip.
But now, half of US adults believe Israel has “gone too far” in their military campaign in Gaza as the death toll has risen to 27,000 people, with two-thirds of those victims being women and children.
“So clearly, you know, Israel is a separate issue from Ukraine. And I'm completely in support of helping Israel, they’re our greatest ally in the Middle East, their strategic importance to us. So, I do think that needs to be a priority for us,” he said.
“And I also understand those that are concerned about the fiscal component to it, because, I mean, goodness, we're approaching $35 trillion national debt right now. And every dollar we're spending, we're borrowing. So it's clearly an issue we have to address. And we have a very tight majority. And there's different opinions on this, but I think there are ways to navigate it,” Wilkins added.
“And the fact that they're trying to say, this is a border bill when they want to send another $68 billion to Ukraine. It’s ridiculous,” the analyt emphasized.
US President Joe Biden - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.02.2024
‘Political Maneuver': Biden Threatens to Veto House GOP Israel Aid Bill
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