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IPFS News Link • Senate/Senators

Senate Republicans sink border bill as Schumer eyes a separate Israel and Ukraine aid vote


The failed vote on the $118 billion package tees up an alternative plan laid out by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who plans to force a vote Wednesday on an Israel and Ukraine aid package stripped of border security provisions after Republicans blocked the larger bill, a Senate Democratic aide said.

Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., the lead Democratic negotiator, said he was aghast that Republicans sank the legislation their leadership had negotiated and signed off on just three days ago.

"This is the most outrageous thing that I have been a part of in my 16 years in Congress," Murphy told NBC News moments after the vote. "Within a couple of hours are releasing available they all ran for the hills. ... We've learned that Trump is fully and completely in charge of the party, and they are rudderless otherwise."

Five Democrats joined the bulk of Republicans in opposing the legislation, which failed to get the necessary 60 votes. Just four Republicans voted for it: Sens. Mitt Romney of Utah, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and James Lankford of Oklahoma, the top Republican negotiator on the deal.

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz., another leading negotiator of the border bill, blasted critics for seeking to prolong a broken system for political gain. "I have a very clear message for anyone using the southern border for staged political events: Don't come to Arizona. Take your political theater to Texas," she said. "Do not bring it to my state."

The Senate will now turn to the pared-down foreign aid package, which includes assistance to the warring countries and Taiwan. This will still include provisions targeting fentanyl trafficking, the Democratic aide said. The bill will need at least 60 votes to proceed in a vote later Wednesday with a final vote in the coming days.