Congress is passing measures to support Ukraine on a wide, bipartisan basis, and fast, and they have the support of a majority of the U.S.
President Joe Biden signed a lend-lease program to get military aid to Ukraine on Monday, which passed on Monday the Senate by unanimous consent, and on Tuesday, the House passed $40 billion in emergency funding to Ukraine on a 368-to-5 vote. Biden previously hoped to pass the supplemental Ukrainian aid simultaneously with new COVID relief ahead of a possible fall surge of the virus, but scrapped the plan to win over Republicans, saying Monday “we cannot afford delay.”
The $40 aid bill now heads to the Senate, where Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said “time is of the essence.”
“President Biden has made clear that the aid provided by Congress a few months ago is now near its end,” Schumer said Wednesday on the Senate floor. “As we acted quickly and decisively a few months ago, we must do so again very, very soon, and I will make sure this is a priority for the Senate.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell called the war in Ukraine “the most important thing going on in the world right now.”
New polling shows Congress has majority support across both major political parties. Two-thirds of U.S. adults support strict economic sanctions on Russia, according to a Pew Research Center poll released Tuesday. The poll also found 71% support sending military equipment and weapons to Ukraine and 64% support stationing U.S. forces in NATO countries.
And while Democrats and Democratic leaners are more likely to support these measures, 60% of Republicans and Republican leaners still back U.S. troops in NATO countries, and 73% support sanctions.
Ukraine is a relative bright spot for Biden’s approval. The Pew poll found more U.S. adults approve his administration’s response to Russia’s invasion than disapprove, 45% to 34%, including a growing minority of Republicans. Between March and May, the percentage of Republicans and Republican leaners who approve of Biden’s handling of the situation in Ukraine has grown from 21% to 26%.
The percentage of Americans who believe the U.S. hasn’t done enough for Ukraine has fallen from 42% in March to 31% in May. About a third believe U.S. support is about right, 22% aren’t sure, and 12% say it’s too much.
The poll was conducted between April 25 and May 1, 2022 with a panel of 5,074 respondents with a sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.