The White House on Monday warned that President Joe Biden would veto legislation to provide funding to Israel amid the ongoing Gaza conflict after House Speaker Mike Johnson vowed to put forward such a measure over the weekend.
The veto threat comes as Senate lawmakers have introduced legislation to pair aid to Israel and Ukraine with border security funding in reforms, a plan that has drawn considerable backlash from House Republicans, who deem the legislation unacceptable. Johnson on Saturday announced the House would consider a standalone bill for Israel aid, resulting in a Monday statement from the White House.
“The Administration strongly opposes House passage of H.R. 7217, making emergency supplemental appropriations to respond to the attacks in Israel for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2024, and for other purposes,” it read. “The Administration spent months working with a bipartisan group of Senators to reach a national security agreement that secures the border and provides support for the people of Ukraine and Israel, while also providing much-needed humanitarian assistance to civilians affected by conflicts around the world.”
The Senate bill in question has prompted furious condemnation from Republican border hawks in both chambers. Utah GOP Sen. Mike Lee for instance, suggested that the terms of the legislation merited new leadership in the Republican Party.
“Instead of working in good faith to address the most pressing national security challenges, this bill is another cynical political maneuver,” the White House asserted. “The security of Israel should be sacred, not a political game. The Administration strongly opposes this ploy which does nothing to secure the border, does nothing to help the people of Ukraine defend themselves against Putin’s aggression, fails to support the security of American synagogues, mosques, and vulnerable places of worship, and denies humanitarian assistance to Palestinian civilians, the majority of whom are women and children.”
“The Administration strongly encourages both chambers of the Congress to reject this political ploy and instead quickly send the bipartisan Emergency National Security Supplemental Appropriations Act to the President’s desk,” it concluded. “If the President were presented with H.R. 7217, he would veto it.”