‘But Isn’t That The Point?’: Dem Sen Backtracks Answer Over Ukraine Aid After CNN Anchor Pushes Him

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Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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Democratic Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy appeared to backtrack his answer on Ukraine aid after CNN’s Poppy Harlow pushed him on the criticisms coming from Republicans.

President Joe Biden proposed a $106 billion supplemental spending package in October following Hamas’ attack on Israel that includes more than $61 billion in emergency funding for Ukraine, $14.3 billion aid for Israel and $1.4 billion for state and local governments handling the influx of migrants. Speaker Mike Johnson told the White House there would be no aid for Ukraine unless the border is given aid.

Harlow noted that Republicans in Congress are blaming President Joe Biden for coupling foreign aid to border security.

“You said the White House is more involved now. Do you think [Sen. Lankford] has a point by saying the Biden Administration coupled it together and now we’ve got to deal with it together?” Harlow asked.

“I don’t because it’s fairly normal for there to be these emergency spending bills before Congress when we have insufficient funds for the operation of the border or for our foreign policy objectives. It’s very different to say on top of that funding we are going to make major changes in law. And that’s what Republicans are asking for. They are asking for very severe, very draconian immigration policy changes. Policy changes that they know could not pass if they weren’t holding up support for the war against Vladimir Putin.” (RELATED: President Invites Zelenskyy To White House As Biden Administration Makes Push For More Ukraine Aid)

“But isn’t that the exact point?” Harlow asked. “Isn’t that their exact point? It’s a crisis, I think many people agree what’s happening at the border is a crisis. So this is a moment we got to deal with it at home and then we’re going to help Ukraine, too?”

“Yeah, I think we should separate the two,” Murphy said. “I don’t think that Vladimir Putin should be given a green light to invade and conquer Ukraine in Europe simply because for 40 years we’ve had a tough time coming to a conclusion on immigration policy. But listen, Poppy, we’re going to work at this. I’m at the table. I hear what Republicans have been saying. We are going to try to come to a conclusion. And I’m sitting down with Senator Lankford and others in good faith this week.”

Democratic leaders at the state and local level have expressed dissatisfaction with the White House’s aid proposal, arguing that Democratic cities have become overrun with migrants and the president’s move is “disheartening” and a “mistake.”