According to Breitbart, the Senate voted on Tuesday to pass a massive $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill.
The legislation was backed by 70 senators, including 21 Republicans led by Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
McConnell says supporting Ukraine is GOP’s “number one priority”
The bill exposed sharp divisions on the right, with one point of contention being an additional $45 billion in aid for Ukraine.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters at a Capitol Hill press conference on Tuesday that aiding the Eastern European nation remains his party’s “number one priority.”
MCCONNELL: “Providing assistance for Ukrainians to defeat the Russians is the number one priority for the United States right now, according to most Republicans.”
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) December 20, 2022
“Providing assistance for Ukrainians to defeat the Russians is the number one priority for the United States right now according to most Republicans,” he said, adding, “That’s sort of how we see the challenges confronting the country at the moment.”
However, a poll published by Morning Consult in November found that registered Republican voters listed immigration, terrorism, and drug trafficking as their top three foreign policy issues. In contrast, Republicans listed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as being issue number 10.
Meanwhile, a Harvard CAPS/Harris survey put out this month that inflation, economy and jobs, and immigration were the top issues for Americans of all political stripes.
Some House Republicans push back on McConnell’s words
McConnell’s words were met with loud pushback by some members of his own party, including Rep. Paul Gosar. The Arizona lawmaker tweeted that he had “news” for McConnell, saying that “America has 99 problems but the Ukraine ain’t one.”
Commenting on the budget “deal,” Senator Mitch McConnell stated that the “number one priority of the United States” is to send another $45 billion to Ukraine to defend its borders.
I have news for @LeaderMcConnell: America has 99 problems but the Ukraine ain’t one.
— Rep. Paul Gosar, DDS (@RepGosar) December 21, 2022
“These comments by a Republican are an insult to the American people that Mitch McConnell fails to represent,” Gosar went on to add.
“This is the epitome of America Last,” he added. “In all my travels across Arizona, not one of my constituents said that defending Ukraine should be our top priority. Not one.”
Wisconsin Rep. Warren Davidson wasn’t pleased either, and he contrasted the amount of money being given to Ukraine with what has been allocated to protect America’s southern border.
$44.9 billion for Ukraine in the Omnibus.
$16.7 billion for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Democrats continue to protect a foreign country’s border over our OWN.
— Rep. Tom Tiffany (@RepTiffany) December 20, 2022