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Rep. Wilson (SC-2) introduces Lend-Lease Act to help protect Ukrainian civilians during invasion

Washington, D.C. 03/01/2022 – Representative Joe Wilson (R-SC), Ranking Member of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the Helsinki Commission, along with Co-Chairman Steve Cohen (D-TN), Liz Cheney (R-WY), Tom Malinowski (D-NJ), Mike Waltz (R-FL) and Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) introduced the bipartisan Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022. This proposed legislation would enhance the President’s current lend and lease authority to simplify bureaucratic barriers with regards to military equipment for Ukraine.

The scope of this bill would be limited to materials for use in protecting civilians during the current Russian military invasion, and the broader national security concerns of the United States.

This bicameral bill serves as a companion to the Senate version introduced by Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX).

In commenting on the act, Rep. Wilson said, “I am grateful to introduce this bipartisan bill to ensure that red tape does not stand in the way of the courageous people of Ukraine as they fight for their families and the sovereignty of their country. There is historical precedent for lend-lease dating back to World War II, which was instrumental in defeating Hitler’s Nazi Germany. This war perpetrated by Vladimir Putin against Ukraine has united the world in its resolve against corrupt authoritarians and in admiration for the Ukrainian people. The US, along with our valued allies, must continue to supply Ukraine with the military equipment they need to repel this attack, and this legislation expedites and expands that process."

Rep. Steve Cohen. followed that by saying, “President Franklin Roosevelt’s Lend-Lease program, enacted in 1941, very likely permitted Britain to keep fighting the Nazis in World War II, and ultimately helped roll back tyranny across Europe. This similarly necessary Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act will, I hope, allow the brave people of Ukraine to defend themselves against unwarranted Russian aggression without obligating U.S. troops.”

“The United States must take aggressive and decisive action to aid Ukraine as they fight Putin’s brutal invasion. I’m proud to join Senator Cornyn and Rep. Wilson in introducing legislation that will ensure the United States can continue to provide equipment and armaments without delay,” said Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming.

“Ukrainians have proven they’re willing to stand and fight for democracy against one of the largest armies in the world,” said Rep. Tom Malinowski. “They deserve a fair shot to protect their country, and this legislation will give President Biden even greater flexibility to deliver to them the weapons they need.”

“The United States must provide all available military assistance to the Ukrainian people in their fight for freedom and sovereignty. This program will provide Ukraine with additional flexibility and resources to continue their fight against Russian invaders and further bolster European security,” said Rep. Mike Waltz.

In closing, Rep. Elissa Slotkin said, When it comes to key national security issues, partisanship should stop at the water’s edge. The Ukrainian people have shown incredible bravery in the last few days to protect their country, and I’m pleased that Republicans and Democrats are working together to make sure we have their backs. This bill will give the President the authority to lend and lease military equipment directly to the Ukrainian government to protect civilians and to give the Ukrainian Armed Forces the tools they need to continue to fight back against Russia’s unwarranted aggression.”


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