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Newsbreak: Senate to Vote on Watchdog for Ukraine Aid – Will Billions in US Tax Money Finally Have a Tough, Independent Oversight?

FILE PHOTO: National flags of Ukraine and the U.S. fly at a compound of a police training base outside Kiev, Ukraine, May 6, 2016. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

The United States Senate will vote on an amendment proposed by Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., to create a Senate-approved watchdog over billions of cash paid to Ukraine, according to a report by MSN on March 27, 2023. The amendment, which must be approved by at least 60 votes, is part of the Senate’s effort to repeal two Authorizations for the Use of Military Force. The watchdog would be in charge of overseeing the monies used to assist Ukraine in its fight against Russia, as well as reporting to Congress on how the funds are spent and Kyiv’s compliance with anti-corruption norms. Hawley believes that Ukraine is the largest recipient of US overseas aid, and the public deserves to know how their tax money is spent. The amendment requires the president to appoint and the Senate to confirm an inspector general for the watchdog job.


The Ideal candidate for the watchdog job, according to Hawley, is someone similar to John Sopko, the current special inspector general for Afghanistan, who is tough, tenacious, and independent. Hawley is adamantly opposed to Ukraine aid, but even colleagues who disagree with him have shown support for his approach. The amendment has been discussed with all members, and no one has rejected it. Hawley believes that robust oversight is necessary for the billions of dollars the US has sent to Ukraine, and he hopes the amendment will not be controversial, as reported by the Washington Examiner on March 27, 2023. Senate Republicans are divided over their support for continuing Ukraine aid amid Russia’s invasion.


Politico reported on March 24, 2023 that Hawley will get a floor vote next week on his amendment seeking to create a special inspector general to oversee U.S. aid to Ukraine.


Josh Hawley during a Senate Judiciary Committee Business Meeting, at the U.S. Capitol, on Feb. 10, 2022.

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