Speaker Johnson to advance separate Israel, Ukraine, Taiwan bills

Politics

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, R-La., makes his way to the House floor on Friday, March 22, 2024. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., filed a motion to vacate him from the speakership, later in the day. 

Tom Williams | CQ-Roll Call, Inc. | Getty Images

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., on Monday said he plans to move forward with four individual bills to fund Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan, separating out key components of a foreign aid package that has been shelved in the House for months.

Johnson held a Monday evening conference with House Republicans to lay out the four bills: one to fund Israel, another for Ukraine, another for Taiwan and a fourth that would wrap several foreign policy proposals into one.

The plan comes as Johnson balances political threats from his party members against added pressure to provide military support to Israel following Iran’s attempted attack over the weekend.

On Saturday, Iran launched over 300 drones and missiles at Israel, most of which were intercepted via a coordinated effort between Israel, the U.S. and other partners in the region.

In the days since Iran’s strike, Johnson has faced a renewed push to end the monthslong stalemate on the $95 billion foreign aid package for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, which the Senate passed in February and has been sitting in the House ever since.

On Sunday, President Joe Biden spoke with Johnson, as well as Senate Majority Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y.

On Monday, the White House reiterated its urging for the House of Representatives to bring the $95 billion joint foreign aid package to the House floor. National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby added at a press briefing that Biden would oppose a stand-alone bill to only fund Israel.

Along with pressure from the Biden administration, Johnson is confronting the possibility that his own party members might oust him.

In March, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., filed a motion to vacate Johnson, but did not force a vote on the motion. She said the move was more of a “warning.”

On Monday, Greene was dissatisfied with Johnson’s four-bill foreign aid plan but said that she had not yet made a decision on whether to move forward with the motion to vacate.

“I am firmly against the plan as it stands right now,” Greene told reporters as she exited the House Republican meeting on Monday. “This is such a scam and people are so done with it.”

“He’s definitely not going to be speaker next Congress if we’re lucky enough to have the majority,” Greene added.

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