Durbin Urges Congress to Pass the President's National Security Supplemental Funding Request

Durbin: Protecting our national security interests and defending American values will take a bipartisan effort, not political games

WASHINGTON  U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, took to the Senate floor to urge his colleagues to pass President Biden’s $106 billion national security supplemental funding request, which includes emergency funds for Ukraine, Israel, the Indo-Pacific, and humanitarian crises.  At a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing last week, Durbin questioned Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin about the supplemental request and emphasized how detrimental it would be for the NATO alliance if the United States did not continue to financially support Ukraine.  Secretary Blinken also emphasized Putin’s efforts to distract the U.S. from the war in Ukraine by meeting with Hamas leadership in Moscow.

Durbin said, “And Secretary Blinken [at the Appropriations Committee hearing] added that such assistance is critical in thwarting not just Putin, but aggressors around the world who are watching and gauging our sustained commitment.  I agree completely.  Looking at the world today, I do not believe it is a stretch to say freedom is currently under siege and fighting forits future.  Right now, several democracies across the globe are fighting against tyrannical powers—in some cases, autocratic governments; in others, terrorist organizations—that seek to undermine the global order.  But this much is clear:  Democratic values are under siege, and the United States and our generation has a responsibility to act.”

Durbin continued, “[The supplemental] includes money to help supply Ukraine with weapons to continue its brave fight against Russian aggression.  It includes money to help Israel defend itself against Hamas, which on October 7th perpetrated the largest attack against Jews in any single day since the Holocaust.  And importantly, it also includes billions of dollars to support humanitarian needs across those conflict zones and the world, including as the crisis grows in Gaza.  Because as important as it is to support nations like Ukraine in their struggle against tyranny, it is equally as important to support innocent civilians who so often become collateral damage and bear the brunt of suffering during periods of conflict.”

During his speech, Durbin praised the President’s remarks in which he said we not only have the financial ability, but the moral responsibility to support democracies worldwide fighting tyranny.

“Right now, the global community faces profound challenges—the outcomes of which will reverberate to every corner of the world for decades to come.  As a global superpower, America has a central role to play in defending freedom.  It is not only the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do,” Durbin continued.

Last week, the House passed a Republican-led plan to provide billions of dollars only to Israel.  Durbin slammed their plan, which would cynically cut funding for the IRS and omit support forUkraine to defend itself from Russia.

“Protecting our national security interests and defending American values will take a bipartisan effort, not political games,” Durbin concluded. “As such, I urge my colleagues to swiftly pass this funding package and help reassure the global community that as long as there is a United States of America, we will be standing for freedom across the world.”

Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available herefor TV Stations.