WASHINGTON – Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement in response to reports that the Trump Administration is willfully delaying the disbursal of $250 million in military assistance to Ukraine.
“For the past several years, Democrats and Republicans in Congress have come together in sending a clear and unambiguous message to the world of our rock solid support for the people of Ukraine. Through the Congressional power of the purse, we have authorized and appropriated robust security assistance funds to make certain the government of Ukraine can defend itself from unrelenting aggression by Vladimir Putin.
“In willfully delaying these funds, the Trump Administration is once again trying to circumvent Congress’ Constitutional prerogative of appropriating funds for U.S. government agencies. It is also undermining a key policy priority that has broad and deep bipartisan support.
“Enough is enough. President Trump should stop worrying about disappointing Vladimir Putin and stand up for U.S. national security priorities. We have a responsibility to help Ukraine defend its sovereignty and deter Russia from further aggression. The Administration should stop playing games and immediately release these funds approved by Congress, which are supported by the State Department and Pentagon.
“Any further effort by President Trump to weaken U.S. efforts to hold Russia accountable for undermining the peace, security, stability, sovereignty or territorial integrity of Ukraine, will be met with fierce opposition in Congress.”