Stauber votes to end U.S. military aid to Ukraine

15 July 2023

WASHINGTON U.S. Rep. Pete Stauber was among 70 House Republicans who voted to cut all U.S. military aid to Ukraine.

The proposed amendment to the defense spending bill failed 70-358 with all Democrats and the vast majority of Republicans voting against it on Thursday.

The $868 billion National Defense Authorization Act itself, which had Stauber’s support, passed the Republican-controlled House on Friday morning, largely along party lines, 219-210. Four Republicans voted against it and four Democrats voted for it. Democrats withheld support after Republicans attached amendments targeting abortion, gender transition procedures, and diversity, equality and inclusion programs in the military.

However, several amendments introduced by Republicans to curb financial support to Ukraine in its nearly year-and-a-half-long war with Russia did not pass.

The amendment to cut all military aid, introduced by Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., was just one sentence long: “Notwithstanding any provision of this or any other Act, no Federal funds may be made available to provide security assistance to Ukraine.”

Stauber, of Hermantown, defended voting for it in a statement to the News Tribune on Friday.

“My vote was to address this Administration’s lack of transparency and accountability,” Stauber said. “There are billions and billions of American taxpayer money and military equipment currently unaccounted for with no strategic plan to end the conflict. I support the Ukrainian people’s efforts to defend themselves and defeat Russian aggression.”

But earlier this year, a report by inspectors general at the U.S. Department of Defense Office, Department of State and United States Agency for International Development Offices found no widespread fraud at that time.

“As of March 1, 2023, the three (Offices of Inspector General) had received 189 complaints alleging misconduct related to the Ukraine response. Investigations related to the Ukraine response have not yet substantiated significant waste, fraud, or abuse,” a summary of the report said.

Their offices continue to oversee the handling of U.S. aid sent to Ukraine.

Stauber also backed another failed amendment introduced by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., that would have cut $300 million in funding to Ukraine. That amendment failed Thursday in an 89-341 vote.

Stauber has voted for aid to Ukraine in the past. In April 2022, within two months of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, he voted to send $40 billion to the country.

And in the hours after Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022, Stauber tweeted that Russia’s atack was attack “unprovoked” and “unacceptable” and urged the U.S. and allies to “stand strong” with Ukrainians.


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