Suozzi backs House speaker after foreign aid bill passes

Suozzi backs House speaker after foreign aid bill passes
United States House of Representatives chamber at the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain)

After Congress passed a $95 billion foreign aid package that delivers aid to Ukraine, Israel and the Indo-Pacific,  Rep. Tom Suozzi (NY-03) said the next step is allocating funds to secure the country’s southern border.

The foreign aid package was voted on in the House of Representatives April 20 and in the Senate April 23. It passed in both chambers, with bipartisan support integral to its passage after Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson of Louisiana put his job on the line and brought the measure to the floor for a controversial vote.

Suozzi said this aid package “will provide long-awaited aid, including humanitarian aid, to Ukraine, Israel, and the Indo-Pacific.”

The $95 billion aid package is split between the three regions, with $60.84 billion allocated to Ukraine to aid in its war with Russia, $26.38 billion for Israel and $8.12 billion for the Indo-Pacific to counter China.

Bringing the vote to the House of Representatives followed months of delays due to pushback from many of its far-right Republican members, who opposed giving aid to Ukraine.

Since the war broke out in February 2022, the United States has sent about $74 billion in aid to Ukraine. But this had stalled in 2024.

For months Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had been lobbying the United States government to deliver aid to his country amid war, but partisan opposition in Congress led months of inaction.

The bill’s aid to Ukraine faced the strongest opposition from MAGA Republicans, many of whom align with former President Donald Trump, including Johnson, who did an about-face after receiving an intelligence briefing as a member of the nation's most senior leadership on the stakes involved in not supporting Ukraine militarily.

Just a week prior to the vote being brought to the House floor, Suozzi penned an op-ed that called for partisanship to be cast aside so aid could be delivered to these regions.

Far-right Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene criticized the House speaker for failing to deliver on promises and said she would not tolerate his anticipated plan to push for more aid to Ukraine. Her disapproval includes threats to call for his removal as speaker via a single vote, yet she did not indicate if or when this could occur.

In the wake of Greene’s warnings to oust House Speaker Johnson, Suozzi, a Democrat, announced his support of the Republican speaker.

Suozzi attributed the divisiveness in delivering Ukraine aid to Russian propaganda, which he said Republicans like Greene were “parroting.”

“Our foreign adversaries tried to divide us and stop us from supporting Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan,” Suozzi wrote in a release. “Putin, the Iranians, and the Chinese Communist Party were counting on the rhetoric of Moscow Marjorie, and the other isolationists and extremists in the chaos caucus to stop us from doing our jobs. Instead, we, on a bipartisan basis, fulfilled the call of history and fulfilled our role as the indispensable nation.”

But in his praise for the foreign aid package’s passage in Congress, Suozzi also called for security to be brought to the U.S.-Mexico border – funds for which were included in the original foreign aid package presented in February.

“Now let’s bring ‘Order to The Border!’” Suozzi wrote in a release.

In tandem with delivering aid to Ukraine, the package also strengthens sanctions on Russian assets. It funds Israel'ss military efforts against Iran and other proxies, reimburses U.S. military operations and provides humanitarian aid. And a provision requires TikTok's China-based parent company to sell the app or face a U.S. ban.

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