House Paves the Way for $1 Billion in Aid to Ukraine

But the legislation doesn’t include changes to the International Monetary Fund that President Obama and some Democrats pushed for.

Anti-government stand behind a 'wall of smoke' during clashes with police in the center of Kiev on February 20, 2014.
National Journal
Jordain Carney
Add to Briefcase
Jordain Carney
March 6, 2014, 11:11 a.m.

In a Con­gress not known for fast ac­tion, House mem­bers quickly passed le­gis­la­tion Thursday to give Ukraine $1 bil­lion in loan guar­an­tees.

The bill, which passed 385-23 with wide bi­par­tis­an sup­port, was in­tro­duced Wed­nes­day by House Ap­pro­pri­ations Com­mit­tee Chair­man Har­old Ro­gers, R-Ky., and the com­mit­tee’s rank­ing mem­ber Nita Lowey, D-N.Y.

The le­gis­la­tion would give Ukraine ac­cess to loan guar­an­tees from the State De­part­ment. The Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion pledged to give the coun­try $1 bil­lion to help off­set the scale-back of Rus­si­an en­ergy sub­sidies as part of a lar­ger in­ter­na­tion­al ef­fort to provide fin­an­cial sup­port.

Ro­gers called the bill “an im­port­ant first step that will al­low the coun­try to shore up its fin­ances and be­gin to make its eco­nomy more ef­fi­cient.”

And al­though mem­bers stressed the need to help the Ukrain­i­an gov­ern­ment and its fledgling eco­nomy dur­ing floor speeches, they also said the bill would send a mes­sage to Rus­si­an Pres­id­ent Vladi­mir Putin.

Rep. Andy Har­ris, R-Md., said Putin is try­ing to “rel­it­ig­ate the Cold War” with the oc­cu­pa­tion in Crimea.

But the le­gis­la­tion didn’t tie the loan guar­an­tees to changes to the In­ter­na­tion­al Mon­et­ary Fund, as the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion and some Demo­crats wanted.

The pres­id­ent made a White House brief­ing-room ap­pear­ance Thursday af­ter­noon to press mem­bers of Con­gress to pass le­gis­la­tion, and “spe­cific­ally to sup­port the IMF’s ca­pa­city to lend re­sources to Ukraine and to provide Amer­ic­an as­sist­ance for the Ukrain­i­an gov­ern­ment so that they can weath­er this storm and sta­bil­ize their eco­nomy, [and] make needed re­forms.”

But House Minor­ity Whip Steny Hoy­er sug­ges­ted that the IMF pro­vi­sion could make a re­appear­ance in the Sen­ate, with the Sen­ate For­eign Re­la­tions Com­mit­tee po­ten­tially tak­ing up aid le­gis­la­tion next week.

What We're Following See More »
SANS PROOF
NRA Chief: Leftist Protesters Are Paid
14 hours ago
UPDATE
NEW TRAVEL BAN COMING SOON
Trump Still on Campaign Rhetoric
17 hours ago
UPDATE
“WE’RE CHANGING IT”
Trump Rails On Obamacare
17 hours ago
UPDATE

After spending a few minutes re-litigating the Democratic primary, Donald Trump turned his focus to Obamacare. “I inherited a mess, believe me. We also inherited a failed healthcare law that threatens our medical system with absolute and total catastrophe” he said. “I’ve been watching and nobody says it, but Obamacare doesn’t work.” He finished, "so we're going to repeal and replace Obamacare."

FAKE NEWS
Trump Goes After The Media
17 hours ago
UPDATE

Donald Trump lobbed his first attack at the “dishonest media” about a minute into his speech, saying that the media would not appropriately cover the standing ovation that he received. “We are fighting the fake news,” he said, before doubling down on his previous claim that the press is “the enemy of the people." However, he made a distinction, saying that he doesn't think all media is the enemy, just the "fake news."

FBI TURNED DOWN REQUEST
Report: Trump Asked FBI to Deny Russia Stories
18 hours ago
THE LATEST

"The FBI rejected a recent White House request to publicly knock down media reports about communications between Donald Trump's associates and Russians known to US intelligence during the 2016 presidential campaign, multiple US officials briefed on the matter tell CNN. But a White House official said late Thursday that the request was only made after the FBI indicated to the White House it did not believe the reporting to be accurate."

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login