Senate Republicans officially block foreign aid bill with border changes

Source: Politico | February 7, 2024 | Ursula Perano

It marks the end of immigration negotiations that dragged on for four months.

Senate Republicans on Wednesday blocked a package that included aid for Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan and provisions to beef up border security, a long-coming conclusion to tortuous bipartisan negotiations.

The bill failed to advance 49-50, falling short of the 60-vote threshold. The defeat officially ends the unsuccessful talks to shore up border protections that went on for four months.

Republicans had initially demanded border policy changes in exchange for Ukraine aid, but abandoned that trade-off this week quickly after the border deal was announced, deeming it inadequate. House Republican leadership also said the bill was dead on arrival in that chamber, turning more GOP senators against it.

Four Republicans voted to advance the bill, including lead Republican border negotiator Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) as well as Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Mitt Romney (R-Utah) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska). The measure also lost five Democrats, including Sens. Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

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