US House Speaker Johnson works on aid for Ukraine as threat of his removal looms – CNN

Monday, 1 April 2024 —

US House of Representatives Speaker Mike Johnson is working on securing financial aid for Ukraine while the threat of his removal by far-right Republican Trump loyalists looms.

CNN reported that during the two-week Easter recess, Johnson has worked privately with key political players to figure out his Ukraine strategy.

According to CNN, Democrats have made it clear that they will save the speaker from resignation if he pushes through a bill on Ukraine that they can support.

However, CNN also reported that if Johnson proposes a bill that fails to meet the Democrats’ demands or includes new restrictions at the US-Mexico border, Johnson risks alienating both Democrats and far-right Republicans who oppose new aid to Ukraine.

But key members of the far-right House Freedom Caucus, including those who supported the ouster of his predecessor as speaker, Kevin McCarthy, are not showing the same appetite for Johnson’s removal, CNN said.

Some fear that the chaos caused by another fight for the speakership could lead to a coalition with the Democrats, which would result in House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries of the Democrats becoming speaker.

Marjorie Taylor Greene, a member of the US House of Representatives and a Trump ally, has initiated the resignation of a fellow party member, House Speaker Mike Johnson. She accused him of having given "too much" to President Joe Biden and Democrats during talks on financing the US government. It remains unclear whether she can garner enough votes to support her initiative.

Mike Turner, chairman of the US House Intelligence Committee, said that Johnson has promised to put the issue of providing assistance to Ukraine to a vote after Congress returns from the Easter recess.

The US Congress’ approval of over US$60 billion in aid to Ukraine is currently being blocked by Republicans in the House of Representatives. The White House has repeatedly cautioned that this would significantly harm Kyiv's military efforts on the battlefield.

Mike Johnson, the Speaker of the US House of Representatives, had previously agreed to unblock the decision to help Ukraine, but with significant changes requiring that it be a House project and that it be in the form of a loan or a land-lease.

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