Feb 21, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Jeffries names potential GOP allies in Ukraine aid fight

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, wearing a gray suit, blue shirt and purple tie, speaking into a microphone under a white ceiling.

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries. Photo: Graeme Sloan/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday pointed to a pair of prominent House Republicans as possible partners in the effort to secure a vote on aid to Ukraine.

Why it matters: House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) has so far refused to hold a vote on a bipartisan Senate bill with aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan.

What he's saying: Jeffries, in an appearance on "The View," cited comments made by Reps. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) and Mike Turner (R-Ohio) at the Munich Security Conference.

  • "They both expressed to [Ukrainian] President Zelenskyy and to us in our conversations that they want to find a way forward, to work together and to get this bill on the floor for an up or down vote," he said.
  • The comment comes as Democrats have taken steps to force a vote on the Senate bill – but the maneuver would require Republican signatures.

Zoom in: Turner, the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, was one of the few Republicans who questioned Johnson's decision to hold a vote on an Israel aid bill without funds for Ukraine or Taiwan.

  • Fitzpatrick, the chair of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, has proposed a scaled-down alternative to the Senate bill that includes border restrictions.
  • Spokespeople for the two lawmakers did not immediately respond to Axios' requests for comment.

What's next: Interest groups are beginning to put pressure on staunchly pro-Ukraine Republicans to support a discharge petition.

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