Biden's Assurances Aside, US Aid For Ukraine Remains In Limbo

Contrary to President Joe Biden’s ongoing support for Ukraine amid its conflict with Russia, he refrained from affirming any further US aid in a recent press conference with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

What Happened: As per a Politico report on Tuesday, Zelenskyy left the U.S. capital without a concrete commitment from the U.S. to persist in providing weapons to Ukraine. This comes amid Republican pushback to additional funding for Ukraine’s defense.

In the press conference, Biden said, “We're in negotiations to get funding we need. Not making promises, but hopeful we can get there — I think we can.”

He added that the U.S. would carry on supplying Ukraine with air defenses and other armaments “as long as it takes.”

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Why It Matters: The meeting between Biden and Zelenskyy occurred at a critical juncture of increased conflict with Russia, and the Biden administration was pushing for Congressional approval for escalated aid to Ukraine. However, Biden’s call for a $110 billion package for wartime activities in Ukraine and Israel is currently entangled in ongoing debates over US immigration policy and border security.

Biden’s lack of a firm commitment is indicative of the difficulties he encounters when dealing with domestic politics that are sharply divided, even on issues of global importance. It also marks a change in tone from Zelenskyy’s prior visit in September, when Biden was more hopeful about the U.S.’s capacity to support Ukraine in its ongoing conflict.

Despite this uncertainty, Biden did declare a $200 million military aid package for Ukraine, showing his intention to maintain support for the Eastern European country. However, it remains uncertain if this is the last major aid package for the foreseeable future.

A majority of Republicans in both the House and Senate would vote alongside Democrats to send more armaments to Ukraine, but they first demand Biden to agree to a stricter border policy. This has resulted in ongoing negotiations that are unlikely to conclude by year’s end, leaving Zelenskyy without the certainty he sought as he heads back to his embattled nation.

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Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz

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Posted In: NewsPoliticsGeneralJoe BidenUkraine-Russia WarUS AIdVolodymr Zelenskyy
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