A standalone bill to help fund Israel will likely get to the House this week, as the United States must assist its strong Middle East ally, as what is happening in Israel requires "immediate action" new House Speaker Mike Johnson said Sunday.
"We are going to move a standalone Israel funding bill in the House," the Louisiana Republican said on Fox News' "Sunday Morning Futures." "Our Republican colleagues in the Senate have a similar measure. We believe that is a pressing and urgent need."
He acknowledged that many things are going on around the world that must be addressed, but as for now, "what's happening in Israel takes immediate attention. We have to separate that and get it through."
President Joe Biden has proposed a $105 billion spending bill that includes aid for Israel but combines it with far more aid for Ukraine and includes funding for border security, the Indo-Pacific region, and humanitarian aid, leading lawmakers to demand a separate measure for Israel that they say will get aid there faster.
Johnson said Sunday that he believes there will be bipartisan support in both the House and Senate for the funding measure, but stressed that he does not intend to use the issue of aid for Israel for "any partisan political gamesmanship."
"This is a very serious matter," said Johnson, adding that first-hand reports were given at this weekend's Republican Jewish Coalition meeting in Las Vegas, of the "terrible things that were happening" in Israel at the hands of Hamas and their accomplices.
He said he "cannot repeat on television" what some of the witnesses said, but stressed that "we should not waste any more time. I think we will get it to the House this week."
Johnson noted that as soon as he took the gavel, the House passed its resolution "in strong support of our strong ally and great friend Israel."
He added that he spoke to the Republican Jewish Coalition Saturday to send a further signal that support for Israel is a priority for the United States.
"We cannot allow the brutality and unspeakable evil that is happening against Israel right now," he said. "We will stand with our friends."
Johnson, on Sunday, also spoke out against the antisemitism that is being seen at some of the nation's colleges, calling it "despicable" and commenting that the Biden administration has not taken a strong stance against such actions.
"Our public and private universities used to be free speech and debate and respect for opposing views," he said. "We don't see that anymore."
Johnson added that he only "got two hours of sleep last night" when he saw the news about the disturbance that took place between dueling groups of protesters at Tulane University, located in his home state.
'We've got to get a handle on this," he said, adding that there is a great deal of discussion taking place about what Congress can do about what's happening on the nation's campuses.
Sandy Fitzgerald ✉
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.