House Speaker Nancy Pelosi went biblical in urging passage of a $40 billion military and humanitarian aid package for Ukraine, a deal 57 Republicans said the deficit-addicted U.S. can’t afford with a possible recession looming.
The plan, which exceeded by $7 billion President Joe Biden’s request last month, passed overwhelmingly and now heads to the Senate where it is expected pass easily.
“When you’re home thinking about [what the aid package] is all about, just think about ‘when I was hungry, you fed me’ from the Gospel of Matthew,” Pelosi said somberly, paraphrasing Matthew 25:35.
Pelosi: "When you're home thinking about [what $40 billion to Ukraine] is all about, just think about 'when I was hungry, you fed me' from the Gospel of Matthew." pic.twitter.com/J1NukSFVuo
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) May 11, 2022
Pelosi’s reliance on scripture to sell the plan drew howls on social media.
“Nancy Pelosi and Bible quotes go together like peanut butter and anchovies,” tweeted MainePatriot.
“Why is Pelosi comparing giving weapons to a country to feeding the poor in the bible?” another person tweeted.
Another said that Pelosi should “actually read the Bible.”
Pelosi needs to actually read the Bible. We aren’t feeding Ukraine. They are sending a 💩 load of unrestricted $$ to Ukraine while Americans need help at home. Vote that hag out of office! https://t.co/9dXROqcd6y
— Donna (@IAmTheStorm__) May 11, 2022
Others contrasted the Catholic politician’s quoting of the Gospel to her adamant stance for abortion rights amid the Supreme Court’s apparently pending reversal of Roe v Wade.
But the 57 Republicans who voted against the aid package said their opposition was grounded in economics.
“I’m voting against tonight’s reckless $40B Ukraine spending bill,” Arizona Republican Andy Biggs tweeted. “Pelosi rushed the bill to the House floor without hearings or time for members to adequately review the bill. I oppose Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but we can’t help Ukraine by spending money we don’t have.”
Most of the funding – $34.7 billion – is for direct military aid, while the rest covers humanitarian initiatives. The package would be on top of $13.6 billion sent to Ukraine in March.
“With Russia’s continued assault, we must act with the same urgency to provide this additional emergency funding,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro, (D-CT). “We have a moral responsibility to deliver this support to help end the grievous loss of life, hold Putin and his cronies accountable, and protect global democracy.”
Democrats first sought to bundle the Ukrainian aid with yet another COVID-19 spending package, but those plans were scuttled amid GOP opposition.
The new package includes $11 billion to allow the Biden administration to continue sending U.S. military equipment to Ukraine through presidential drawdown authority and $8.7 billion to replenish military equipment. It also includes $6 billion for the Pentagon’s Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative to provide equipment, supplies and logistical support to the Ukrainian military.
Nearly $4 billion will go to pay for U.S. forces and a Patriot missile battery deployed to Europe and $500 million would go toward replacing U.S. Javelin and Stinger missiles donated to Ukraine.
The bill requires the inspectors general for the Pentagon and State Department to oversee delivery and use of the funds.