ICYMI: Shaheen Joins Leader Schumer, Democratic Senators to Discuss Importance of Passing Bipartisan National Security Supplemental Funding Package
(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the U.S. Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committees, joined U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Democratic Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Catherine Cortez-Masto (D-NV) to discuss the importance of passing the recently announced bipartisan national security supplemental funding package. This package would invest in U.S. national security priorities by providing support for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan as well as taking steps to curb the flow of illicit drugs into the nation.
Senator Shaheen’s remarks can be viewed here. Below is a full transcript of Senator Shaheen’s remarks.
Well, like Senator Schumer and my colleagues on the Democratic side of the aisle, I'm very frustrated by what we've seen from our Republican colleagues.
I'm proud to support this national security supplemental package. And I'm here to talk about Ukraine.
But I just want to make one more point before I talk about why this is so critical to Ukraine.
And that is one of the provisions in the border security piece has to do with fentanyl interdiction.
Actually, there are several pieces that have to do with fentanyl interdiction.
Now, I don't know about my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, but in the state of New Hampshire, we have lost too many people because they have died from fentanyl overdoses.
And anything that we can do to cut down on the amount of fentanyl that's coming into the United States we ought to be doing—by God.
And if they're not willing to do that, shame on them.
The fact is America's life expectancy has gone down because of drug overdoses largely because of the impact of fentanyl.
So I don't know how anybody can stand up and say, they are going to oppose our efforts to keep fentanyl out of this country and go back to their voters with a straight face and say it doesn't affect our national security, and it doesn't affect the ability of Americans to live their lives and safety.
Now providing aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, along with humanitarian assistance for the people of Gaza, and for other vulnerable populations: it's what's in this bill, and it sends a strong message that America stands on the side of freedom and democracy and against dictators and terrorists.
If signed into law, it will provide Ukraine with the necessary aid to continue its war against Putin— a fight for freedom which Ukraine must win.
The Europeans got their act together.
Last week, they provided $54 billion in aid to Ukraine.
Well, it's time America gets its act together.
It's been nearly two years since Putin's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.
And thanks to the bravery and sacrifice of the Ukrainian people, a sovereign and democratic Ukraine stands today.
But if we don't act quickly, all the battles they've won all the land, they've reclaimed all the progress they've made to win back their country could be undone.
Right now, Ukraine has just 20% of the ammunition and artillery it needs as Russia is advancing.
How America responds to Putin today will determine the strength of tomorrow's autocrats.
When dictators are not held accountable for their aggression, their threat to the world continues.
Under Putin, Russia has deepened their ties with Iran with North Korea and the People's Republic of China—up to 85% of Russia's missiles are now foreign made.
And Iran supplies 70% of Russia's drone capabilities—these are the drones that are terrorizing Ukraine.
And if we fail to support Ukraine, we will only embolden Iran and its proxies further.
So for all of my Republican colleagues who have been screaming about Iran and screaming about China, what they're going to do if they fail to fund Ukraine is to embolden the People's Republic of China, and emboldened Iran and embolden North Korea.
Because make no doubt about it: Beijing will be emboldened to take even more provocative actions towards Taiwan.
We heard from the Taiwanese ambassador to the U.S. recently, who said that Ukraine’s success in defending itself with the help of the United States is the most important message for deterring an invasion of Taiwan.
So, let's be very clear: Putin is not just waging war against Ukraine.
If he's not stopped in Ukraine, there's no telling where he goes next.
It could be into a NATO country; that would invoke Article Five and it would send our soldiers to fight in Europe.
You know, the modern-day Republican Party, the party of Ronald Reagan, was built on standing up to our Soviet adversaries.
But MAGA Republicans are willing to put at risk our national security to let Ukraine fail simply because they think it will help their preferred presidential candidate, former President Trump, in November.
That’s spineless and it's wrong.
The bipartisan supplemental funding agreement will follow through on our promise to stand by our friends in Ukraine.
We must not abandon Ukraine now.
We must not deny them the resources and tools and the weapons they need to defeat Putin once and for all.