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The White House is asking for almost $106 billion for Israel, Ukraine and the border

President Biden used an Oval Office address to make the case that funding for Israel and Ukraine is in the national interest.
Jonathan Ernst
Pool/Reuters via Getty Images
President Biden used an Oval Office address to make the case that funding for Israel and Ukraine is in the national interest.

President Biden told Americans in a rare Oval Office address on Thursday that it was in the national interest of Americans to back democracies that found themselves under attack.

On Friday, his budget office put a price tag on that, asking lawmakers for almost $106 billion in funding for Israel, Ukraine, countering China in the Indo-Pacific, and operations on the southern U.S. border.

The fate of the request rests in the hands of Congress, where the Republican-led House of Representatives is currently without a speaker — making it impossible or at least extremely difficult for any funding package to move forward.

On top of those logistics, many House Republicans want to rein in government spending, particularly on support for foreign aid and conflicts.

But linking the priorities together could be a strategy to pass the package, Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, told NPR in an interview. "A lot of times in the Congress, things happen where you get a bill or a funding package that you don't agree with everything, but if you agree with a lot of it, it can broaden the support," he said.

Here's how the request breaks down.

Ukraine: $61.4 billion

Biden has pledged to back Ukraine "as long as it takes" in its fight against Russia, now into its 20th month with no end in sight. Congress approved more than $112 billion in aid for Ukraine in 2022, but the White House has said that money has almost run out.

Earlier this fall, Biden asked for $24 billion to get Ukraine through December, with most of the money going to military aid. This new request is designed to last through September 2024. It includes weapons, equipment, support for U.S. troops in Europe and economic support for Ukraine's government.

Israel: $14.3 billion

In Tel Aviv, Biden promised an "unprecedented" package of aid to support Israel after the Hamas attacks of Oct. 7. The request includes funding for air and missile defense, military financing and embassy support.

Humanitarian aid: $9.15 billion

This includes support for Israel, Gaza and Ukraine. The breakdown of this funding is "flexible," White House budget director Shalanda Young told reporters, depending on where the need is greatest.

Countering China: $7.4 billion

This will provide support to "multiple countries" in the region, national security adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters. A breakdown was not immediately available.

Senate Republicans — including Leader Mitch McConnell — have said they want to make sure Taiwan, a self-governing island that China claims as its own territory, can deter Beijing from attacking. Materials provided to reporters did not specifically mention Taiwan.

The request includes money for U.S. shipyards that build attack submarines, and $2 billion for the World Bank to provide alternatives to China's Belt and Road lending to developing countries.

Border security: $13.6 billion

Earlier this year, the White House asked for but did not receive $4 billion to help deal with fentanyl trafficking and provide help to migrants at the southern U.S. border. This new request is broader and includes money for detention facilities, border agents, asylum officers and state and local governments struggling to provide services to migrants.

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Deepa Shivaram is a multi-platform political reporter on NPR's Washington Desk.