The White House has recently championed a new aid package to distribute funds to Israel and Ukraine and address the domestic border crisis. However, Democratic city leaders, particularly in migrant-affected areas, have expressed their dissatisfaction over blending domestic and international issues in one package.
On Friday, President Joe Biden asked Congress for approval on an almost $106 billion aid package. This package detailed over $61 billion for Ukraine, $14.3 billion for Israel, and $13.6 billion for the ongoing border crisis. Of this, $1.4 billion is intended for state and local governments grappling with a surge in migrants.
Democratic representatives from New York City and Chicago shared with the Daily Caller their concerns about the White House’s decision to combine border funding with international issues. They described it as both “disheartening” and an oversight.
Raymond Lopez, a Democratic Chicago Alderman, shared his disappointment with the Daily Caller. “It’s concerning that this aid is part of a deal unrelated to immigration or our border,” Lopez said. “The package’s primary focus is on the conflict in Israel and Ukraine. We should be having a thorough conversation about securing our border and the future of the 4 million people who have entered the U.S. since last October.”
A detailed breakdown from the White House shows that around $1.4 billion is allocated for “temporary food, shelter, and other essential services for migrants transitioning from the Department of Homeland Security’s care.” The remaining funds will assist “qualified arrivals” in resettling the U.S., helping them gain independence.
An additional $1.9 billion is designated for the Department of Health and Human Services to support “qualified arrivals and unaccompanied minors.”
The broader context of the aid package emphasizes support for Israel and Ukraine amidst their ongoing conflicts. As outlined in the package, Israel would get funding to fortify its forces against Hamas and rejuvenate its missile defense system. The financial aid to Ukraine is intended further to equip the nation in its conflict with Russia.
Previously, in August, the Biden administration had approached with a separate request for about $4 billion to tackle the border issue, as reported by CNBC News.