What is in the US Senate’s $118bn border security and Ukraine bill?

Senate negotiators presented their long-awaited national security bill on Sunday, after months of talks over funding for US allies abroad and changes to border policy.

The Senate is expected to vote on the bill on Wednesday, but it remains highly unclear whether the legislation can pass either chamber of Congress. Members of both parties have already voiced criticism of the bill, and the House speaker, Republican Mike Johnson of Louisiana, has declared the proposal to be “dead on arrival” in the lower chamber.

Here’s everything you need to know about the bill:

How much funding would the bill provide to US allies abroad?

The $118bn bill includes $60bn in military assistance for Ukraine, $14bn in security assistance for Israel and $10bn in humanitarian assistance for civilians affected by war in Ukraine, Gaza and the West Bank.

Another $4.83bn would be used to support US allies in the Indo-Pacific and “deter China”, while $2.4bn would be directed toward assisting US military operations related to conflict in the Red Sea.

What border policy changes are included in the bill?

The legislation has been described as the most severe set of changes to border policy in decades. If passed, the bill would provide $20bn in funding to bolster and expand border security operations at a time when arrests for illegal crossings at the US-Mexican border have hit record highs.

In one of the most significant proposals, Joe Biden would have the option to shut down the border if average daily crossings surpassed 4,000 in a week. If average daily crosses surpassed 5,000 or if the single-day total of crossings exceeded 8,500, then the president would be required to close the border.

The bill would also provide funding to hire additional asylum officers and expedite the review process for asylum claims. If enacted, the legislation would raise the threshold of eligibility for submitting an asylum claim, making it harder for migrants to even start the process.

Despite many Republicans’ calls for changes to the parole system, the bill would retain Biden’s ability to grant parole on a case-by-case basis. The bill would also authorize an additional 250,000 immigrant visas to be distributed over the next five fiscal years.

What has Joe Biden said about the bill?

Biden has voiced strong support for the bill and called on Congress to “come together and swiftly pass this bipartisan agreement”.

“It will make our country safer, make our border more secure, treat people fairly and humanely while preserving legal immigration, consistent with our values as a nation,” Biden said in a statement released on Sunday.

Where do Republicans stand on the bill?

Republicans are sharply divided over the proposal, with some criticizing the proposal even before the bill text was released on Sunday. Senator James Lankford, a Republican of Oklahoma who helped broker the deal, praised the bill as a “once-in-a-generation opportunity to close our open border and give future administrations the effective tools they need to stop the border chaos and protect our nation”.

The top Senate Republican, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, has urged his colleagues to take action on the border, saying in a statement released on Sunday: “The challenges we face will not resolve themselves, nor will our adversaries wait for America to muster the resolve to meet them. The Senate must carefully consider the opportunity in front of us and prepare to act.”

But other prominent Republicans, including Johnson, have already rejected the deal. In the days leading up to the bill’s release, Johnson and his allies attacked the proposal as insufficient, suggesting Biden should instead take executive action to address the situation at the border.

“I’ve seen enough. This bill is even worse than we expected, and won’t come close to ending the border catastrophe the president has created,” Johnson said on Sunday. “If this bill reaches the House, it will be dead on arrival.”

Donald Trump, who has made immigration a central focus of his presidential campaign, has similarly called on Republicans to oppose the bill. Writing on his social media platform Truth Social on Monday, Trump dismissed the bill as “nothing more than a highly sophisticated trap for Republicans to assume the blame on what the Radical Left Democrats have done to our Border, just in time for our most important EVER Election”.

Have progressive Democrats voiced concern about the bill’s border provisions?

Several progressive lawmakers in the House and the Senate have indicated they cannot support the bill because of its severe border security measures. Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, a Democrat of Washington and chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said the bill “throws immigrants under the political bus”.

Senator Alex Padilla, a Democrat of California and chair of the Senate judiciary subcommittee on immigration, citizenship and border safety, slammed the bill negotiating process as opaque, noting that no member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus participated in the talks.

“It is critical that we support our allies in their fight to defend democracy and provide humanitarian relief, but not at the expense of dismantling our asylum system while ultimately failing to alleviate the challenges at our border,” Padilla said.

Can the bill still make it through Congress?

That remains highly unclear. The Senate is expected to vote on the bill on Wednesday, and 60 votes will be required to pass the legislation through the 100-member chamber. Given the frustration shared by members of both parties over the bill’s provisions, the Senate vote is expected to be close.

Even if the bill can make it through the Senate, Johnson has the ability to block it from advancing in the House. Johnson will be closely watching the Senate vote to see how many Republicans oppose the bill. If most Senate Republicans vote against the bill, Johnson will probably feel even more inclined to block its passage in the House.

If the bill fails, what might be next in the fight over funding for Ukraine and Israel?

Johnson has already indicated that the House will vote this week on a standalone bill providing funding for Israel, a move that could further undermine the prospects of passing the border legislation.

The standalone bill does not include additional aid for Ukraine, which has become a sticking point among many hard-right Republicans. Even if the House passes the standalone bill, it appears unlikely that Senate Democrats will sign off on a proposal that only includes funding for Israel, given progressives’ outrage over Israeli airstrikes and the high civilian death toll in Gaza.

The Pentagon has warned that Ukraine is running out of money and ammunition to keep up its fight against Russia. The world will be watching to see what Congress does this week.

The Guardian