Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) is kicking up dust with claims that he’s willing to risk a government shutdown if it would be the means to securing an end of further funding for Ukraine.
Didn’t we just do this?
*US HOUSE REJECTS REPUBLICAN STOPGAP FUNDING BILL TO AVERT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN
*U.S. GOVERNMENT DUE TO SHUTDOWN ON SUNDAY, OCT. 1
— Investing.com (@Investingcom) September 30, 2023
Last weekend, Congress reached an agreement on a temporary spending bill within just three hours of their deadline before a shutdown would have commenced. Like the bill, any success from reaching across the aisle last Saturday will also be short-term.
The stopgap bill only approves government funding on par with 2023 expenses through November 17. At that point, the whole painful process starts all over again. Will the same Congress members who were bickering back and forth over aid for Ukraine last week find themselves back in familiar territory? It would seem so.
In the hours leading up to the passage of the short-term spending bill, Bennet was comfortable holding up the process, touting Ukraine was the line in the sand for him.
Senator Michael Bennet is refusing to vote on the Continuing Resolution because it doesn’t include Ukraine funds.
Let that sink in.
He wants the entire country to suffer through a shutdown so Zelenskyy can buy another villa.
— Joey Mannarino (@JoeyMannarinoUS) September 30, 2023
Now, just days after securing a temporary fix, Bennet is carrying the same torch for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Without funding for Ukraine, Bennet says he is prepared to halt the vote and force a government shutdown just in time for the holiday season.
SENATOR BENNET: Hell yes. We will shut it down for Zelensky. https://t.co/ClbroWbE04
— strac (@ttstrac) October 6, 2023
The U.S. has already doled out $75 million to the war-torn nation. As support from the public continues to decline, we have to ask if Congress members like Bennet are acting on behalf of the nation they are supposed to be representing, or are they he acting in the best interests of Ukraine — even to America’s detriment?
Bennet’s office issued a statement last week — following the Saturday night vote — in which he made his position clear.
“As the Ukrainian people continue to give their lives, the United States has an essential and unique role to lead the free world in Ukraine’s defense. The future of democracy is at stake.”
Bennet continued, “I objected tonight to proceeding to the Continuing Resolution because it failed to provide additional money for Ukraine. Senate Leadership needed to reaffirm our bipartisan commitment to sustain funding for Ukraine. The Senate Leadership has released such a statement, and, as a result, I voted to keep the government open.”
It sounds as though Bennet doesn’t plan to vote that way come mid-November.