Manchin, Capito back funding for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan

CHARLESTON — West Virginia’s two U.S. senators backed a bill Tuesday night providing billions of dollars in aid to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan, as well as requiring either the sale or banning of a controversial social media app with ties to the Chinese government.

The U.S. Senate passed a $95.3 billion aid package for Ukraine as it continues to fight an invasion by neighbor Russia, Israel as it continues to fight the terrorist group Hamas following an attack last October, and Taiwan as neighboring China becomes more aggressive in the region and threatens the island nation.

The package passed in a 79-18 vote, with U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito both voting in favor of the package.

“American leadership means standing with our allies and standing up against authoritarianism,” said Manchin, D-W.Va. “I am proud to vote for this national security package that advances America’s interests both on the world stage and right here at home.”

“Tonight, we stand for our freedom and with our allies,” said Capito, R-W.Va. “I was proud to vote in support of this legislation, which equips our country with the resources to restore American deterrence and resolve as the beacon of freedom we must continue to be for the world.”

Manchin and Capito said the package will not only provide much needed military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine and Israel, but the bill will also provide funding to restock U.S. military equipment and ammunition, which will have a positive economic effect.

“By investing in our allies, we are also investing in our own economic interests by creating new jobs to produce weapons here in the United States and reinvigorating our defense industrial base,” Manchin said.

“The national security supplemental we passed expands the capacity of our industrial base and restocks American munition stockpiles with newer and more advanced weapons, many of which have critical components manufactured in West Virginia,” Capito said.

The package also includes a provision requiring the sale or ban of social media app TikTok. The app is owned by ByteDance, a company with ties to the Chinese government. Concerns have grown over the last several years about the collection of TikTok user data and Chinese government access to that data. Both Manchin and Capito said the TikTok provision is about national security and belongs in the full funding package.

“It will deter China from further aggression in the Indo-Pacific region and protect Americans’ data from its Chinese-owned company, ByteDance, by requiring it to be sold to an American company,” Manchin said.

“Our allies are under attack, our national security industrial base has been weakened, TikTok poses a major national security threat, and adversaries like China, Russia, and Iran are working together in unprecedented ways against the U.S. and our allies like Israel,” Capito said. “It…includes provisions to protect the American people from the Chinese Communist Party’s influence over TikTok.”

Over the weekend, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the four bills in the foreign aid package. Many Republicans in the House have expressed opposition to funding for Ukraine, but that bill passed 311-112. The TikTok bill passed 360-58. U.S. Rep. Carol Miller, R-W.Va., supported the bills, while U.S. Rep. Alex Mooney, R-W.Va., was absent.


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