by Ben Whedon
The White House on Thursday outlined a $40.1 billion funding request in a letter to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy that includes $24 billion for Ukraine-related expenses but just $4 billion to bolster security at the southern border.
Specifically, the White House wants $13.1 billion for the Pentagon to send military aid directly to Kyiv and replenish its own stocks. It further seeks $8.5 billion for the State Department to provide humanitarian and economic support. Lastly, it seeks $2.3 billion for the Treasury to provide financial programs for the country in place of Chinese or other adversarial sources.
That request comes as recent polling suggests the American public has soured on the prospect of providing Ukraine with additional aid. Fifty-five percent of respondents to a recent CNN poll opposed authorizing additional funds, with a majority saying the country has “done enough” to aid Ukraine. The United States has authorized more than $113 billion in aid to Ukraine since the conflict began.
Moreover, the sizeable figures for pro-Ukrainian activities stand in contrast to the roughly $4 billion the administration seeks to secure the southern border.
The administration wants $2.65 billion for the Department of Homeland Security, $350 million for the Department of Health and Human Services to provide support related to the fentanyl crisis, and just under $1 billion for the State Department to assist migrants and investigate child labor activities.
The DHS funding request, in particular, is likely to draw pushback from conservatives, as some lawmakers have called for the lower chamber to refuse additional funds to the department unless it implements major policy changes.
Texas Republican Rep. Chip Roy on Wednesday circulated a letter to congressional colleagues urging exactly such a step, saying “The State of Texas is bearing the brunt of a national crisis at our southern border directly resulting from the unlawful and irresponsible actions of President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas. Criminal cartels maintain operational control of the border.”
He called on the chamber to withhold any DHS funding unless Mayorkas is removed, the nation adopts border security legislation, adopts policies empowering law enforcement to take on drug cartels, or Texas receives remuneration for its own border security efforts.
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Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.