Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said Tuesday that more funding for Ukraine would be included in an upcoming omnibus spending bill that Congress is looking to pass before the end of the year.
Congressional negotiators have been at odds over the final numbers of the spending bill, but Schumer said that he expects a deal will be reached soon. The White House has asked Congress to authorize $37.7 billion in Ukraine aid, which would bring total US spending on the war to about $105 billion.
Congress could authorize more funding for Ukraine than Biden requested, as they did before, but at this point, it’s not clear what the final number will be. Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY), who opposes arming Ukraine, said the new aid should be put to a separate vote.
“This is wrong. We should have a separate vote on additional Ukraine funding. Most of my constituents do NOT wish to have their money sent to Ukraine, especially not without oversight or an audit,” Massie wrote on Twitter.
Massie joined Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) in sponsoring a bill that would require an audit of all the funds the US has authorized for Ukraine. The resolution was voted down by the Democrat-led House Foreign Affairs Committee, but it received support from mainstream Republicans, and Greene said she will reintroduce the legislation when the GOP takes over the House.
While more oversight could increase accountability for the tens of billions being sent to Ukraine, it could also be used to justify more US involvement in the war. The Pentagon said in October that US military personnel based at the US embassy in Kyiv were conducting “onsite” weapons inspections in Ukraine, and NBC News reported this week the US was considering sending a small number of additional troops into the country to track arms.