More than 1,5000 amendments were filed for consideration against the draft cleared by the GOP-led House Armed Services Committee, with nearly 300 advanced to the House floor. Greene filed six markups herself, targeting U.S. assistance to Ukraine, and on Thursday, lawmakers killed one of her top priorities: the elimination of the $300 million in Ukraine funding included in the proposal.
Eighty-nine Republicans voted in favor of eliminating the funding while 130 voted against the amendment. All but four democrats, who did not vote, voted against Greene’s amendment.
The NDAA has passed with bipartisan support every year for the last six years, but the defense policy bill has faced controversy this year as far-right members of the GOP’s flank see it as a way to target President Joe Biden‘s Pentagon policies on social issues like diversity, climate change, abortion and vaccines. With a razor-thin majority, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy can’t afford to lose more than four GOP votes, meaning he will have to perform a balancing act of appeasing his most conservative colleagues without isolating too many moderate Republicans.
There has been a growing effort from those on the right to severely restrict the U.S. military‘s support for Ukraine. Lawmakers around the globe were quick to send assistance to the war effort when Russia first invaded Ukraine in February 2022, Republicans have become increasingly wary of sending more American dollars.
Greene has been one of the most vocal opponents of U.S. support for Ukraine. While introducing her amendment to strike the $300 million in funding, the Georgia Republican said, “Congress should not authorize another penny for Ukraine and push the Biden administration to pursue peace.”
Greene reminded lawmakers on Tuesday that the Department of Defense’s mission is “to provide the military forces needed to deter war and ensure our nation’s security,” not the security of another country.
“That is for America’s national security, not Ukraine. Ukraine is not the 51st state of the United States of America,” the congresswoman said.
The Biden administration and Congress have approved more than $75 billion in aid for Ukraine, the most of any of Ukraine’s Western allies, according to the Kiel Institute for the World Economy. Greene slammed that spending as “essentially open-ended support,” which she argued distracts from other national security priorities and would increase the risk of a nuclear war between the U.S. and Russia.
American support for Ukraine assistance has dropped in recent months. Although most voters say the U.S. is providing the right amount or not enough to Ukraine, 23 percent say the U.S. is giving too much support, a Pew Research poll found last month. That sentiment is especially pronounced among Republicans, of whom 44 percent say the U.S. is sending too much aid. In March 2022, only 9 percent of Republicans said as much.
The five other amendments that Greene filed include the withdrawal of the U.S. from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a prohibition on Ukraine funding until a diplomatic solution is reached, the removal of the creation of a Center of Excellence in Ukraine from the NDAA and bans on sending F-16 fighter jets and long-range missile to Ukraine.
“We should not be devoting time and resources and putting the people of Ukraine over American citizens and over American veterans. We should be only helping our American citizens first,” Greene said on Tuesday.
The post Republicans Kill Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Hopes of Blocking Ukraine Funding appeared first on Newsweek.