Thursday, September 28, 2023

House to Consider HR 5962 – Ukraine Security Assistance

Yesterday, the House Rules Committee met to formulate a rule for the consideration of HR 5962 [Rules Committee Print], a bill making supplemental appropriations in support of Ukraine. The rule (H Res 730) provides a closed rule (limited debate, no amendments). The rule also makes amendments to the versions of HR 4365 (DOD spending) and HR 4367 (ARD spending) that are still being considered by the House.

Nothing in HR 5962, nor the amendments to the other two bills, are strictly of interest here in this blog. But they do provide a clear and public example of the horse trading that goes on during the consideration of major pieces of legislation.

The language of H 5962 provides for $300 million dollars in supplemental spending for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. The language providing that funding is nearly identical to the wording in §8104 that the Rule removes from HR 4365. There is additional language added in HR 5962 provides that $20 million of the monies will go to fund a Special Inspector General for Ukraine Assistance.


Removing the Ukraine funding provisions from the DOD spending bill provides cover for some Republicans {Rep Greene (R,GA) is the most obvious example} to vote for the DOD spending while still opposing funding for Ukraine. At the same time, Democrats that would oppose the DOD spending bill will now be able to vote to support funding for the Ukraine, negating the opposition of a relatively small number of Republicans. Passing this bill will also provide the Speaker with some leverage (probably not much, but McCarthy needs all that he can get) with negotiations with the Senate and the President on an as of yet unconsidered CR.

Interesting side light. HR 4365 contains language (§8105) prohibiting any monies provided in HR 4365 from being used to support the Azov Battalion. Moving the language of §8104 to this bill removes that restriction from the monies appropriated. Not an intended consequence, I am sure (mostly sure), but a consequence just the same.

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