Sen. Rand Paul has shown he has no problem going against Democrats, Republicans, or anyone in between. So it’s no surprise that the junior senator is making a strong, independent push when it comes to cutting aid to Egypt.
According to The Hill, Paul’s push to cut off $1.3 billion in annual aid to Egypt – a move staunchly resisted by some leading Republicans – may be gaining steam.
“Paul, according to Senate aides, thinks he could have the votes to pass an amendment next month to cut off aid to Egypt, a proposal Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and other GOP colleagues have fiercely resisted.
A senior GOP aide said Paul would force another vote on ending aid to the U.S. ally. What legislative vehicle he uses remains uncertain because Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has left the schedule vaguely defined.”
Part of the shift in momentum is stemming from the increased violence in the country. The conflict between Egyptian military forces and members of the Muslim Brotherhood has intensified after the recent military crackdown.
That has even longtime opponents to cutting aid to Egypt rethinking their position. One of the biggest names to now come out in support of Paul’s stance is McCain.
Said McCain in a joint statement with Graham on Aug. 16:
“It is neither in our long-term national interest nor consistent with our values and laws to continue providing assistance at this time to Egypt’s interim government and military. We urge the Obama Administration to suspend U.S. assistance to Egypt and make clear to the current leadership of the country what steps we believe are necessary to halt Egypt’s descent into civil conflict and ultimately to restore our assistance relationship, which has historically served U.S. national security interests.”
Said The Hill:
“It’s a dramatic turnaround from just last month, when McCain warned that Paul’s effort to stop aid would be a ‘terrific mistake.’ ‘I urge my friend from Kentucky, with respect, to realize this amendment would send the wrong message at the wrong time,’ he said during the floor debate.”
What this signals, The Hill continued, is “Paul’s growing influence on the Senate’s foreign policy views,” which has coincided with his surge in recent polls.
Paul attempted to cut off aid to Egypt just weeks ago, attempting to add an amendment to the transportation spending bill that would have redirected all of the aid to Egypt back to U.S. Infrastructure. The measure was tabled by an 86-13 vote on July 31, however.
And even more recently, Paul called President Obama’s continued aid to Egypt “directly flouting the law,” and reiterated his stance that the aid needs to be terminated.
What are your thoughts on cutting aid to Egypt? Let us know below!
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