Photo Credit: Ofer Zidon/Flash90
A fully armed Air Force F-15I Ra’am taking off from the Hatzerim Air Base in the Negev, June 29, 2023.

Congress on Thursday issued a bipartisan reprimand to the Biden administration over its decision to withhold some powerful munitions from Israel in the middle of the still-going Gaza war. The House of Representatives passed a bill, with support from 16 Democrats joining Republicans, that would compel the delivery of those weapons to Israel. However, the White House has threatened to veto the legislation, which it views as a politically motivated attempt by Republicans to sow division within the Democratic party. Most House Democrats stood by their leadership’s position that the bill was poorly drafted and an unnecessary provocation, despite lobbying efforts from across the aisle. The vote highlights ongoing tensions over US military aid to Israel.

Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La) said the Democrats “are clearly making this decision to appeal to a small subset and element in their party,” adding, “The president himself and Leader Schumer both within just the last several weeks were saying that we should stand with Israel. They were using the right language and now they are doing a complete about-face. Why?”

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Reps. Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), and Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) joined the Democratic minority in opposing the bill.

The bill aims to exert pressure on the Biden administration by mandating severe budget cuts for the Department of Defense, State Department, and National Security Council if the President fails to deliver the delayed shipment of 3,500 powerful 2000 lbs. bombs to Israel. Additionally, the legislation contains provisions that would formally censure “the Biden administration’s decision to temporarily halt certain arms transfers to Israel.”

House Foreign Affairs Chair Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Tx) said, “This administration wants to dictate how Israel executes the war that they were thrust into,” stressing that Israel “did not ask for this war. They did not start this war. Hamas started this war.”

Of course, even if the Senate approved the bill as is – and Schumer on Wednesday declared he won’t let that happen, President Biden has already promised to veto the bill.

Republican Jewish Coalition National Chairman former Senator Norm Coleman and CEO Matt Brooks on Thursday issued a statement saying, “There is no excuse for President Biden’s embargo of Israel as it fights for its very survival – and, unsurprisingly, Biden has said he would veto this bill if it ever reached his desk.”

“Without a doubt, there is only one unequivocally pro-Israel party and it is the Republican Party,” the RJC leaders concluded.

And 16 Democrats.


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David writes news at JewishPress.com.