Senate to vote on Ukrainian aid package despite Rand Paul's protests

While he sympathizes with Ukrainians, Rand stressed fiscal responsibility in light of the chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Updated: May 16, 2022 - 3:51pm

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The U.S. Senate will vote on Monday to advance a controversial $40 billion aid package to Ukraine after Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) temporarily blocked the legislation, insisting an inspector general oversee U.S. spending in the war-torn country.

The House voted 368-57 to pass the bill last week with $7 billion more in aid than what President Joe Biden previously requested.

A fiscal conservative, Rand tweeted after blocking the bill, "Congress is trying yet again to ram through a spending bill – one that I doubt anyone has actually read – and there’s no oversight included into how the money is being spent." 

While he sympathizes with Ukrainians, Rand stressed, "All I requested is an amendment to be included in the final bill that allows for the Inspector General to oversee how funds are spent. Anyone who is opposed to this is irresponsible."

The amendment would have expanded the oversight of the inspector general for Afghanistan to also include Ukraine, Newsweek reported. President Joe Biden's withdrawal in August from the Islamic Emirate resulted in the Taliban acquiring a plethora of American military equipment while least $19 billion U.S. tax dollars went to wasted reconstruction efforts.

The Senate is slated to vote Monday afternoon to proceed with the legislation, ending debate and setting it up for a vote.

Paul is the most vocal senator on the bill, but in the House, Republican representatives such as Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) voiced opposition to the legislation. 

"That bill does things we should not be doing," she said.