US Senate’s top Republican: Biden’s funding request will not pass without ‘border solution’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell warned Democrats on Tuesday it will be hard to get President Joe Biden’s supplemental funding request for Ukraine and other priorities across the chamber floor without including border restrictions sought by Republicans.

“It will be difficult to get the package across the floor in the Senate without a credible border solution,” McConnell told reporters at a press conference.

The Kentucky Republican said he spoke by phone with Biden and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen about the president’s supplemental request on Monday.

“I did make it clear to both of them that we have to have a credible solution to the wide-open border in order to get a bill … across the Senate floor. I hope they understood the message,” McConnell said.

He signaled support for a broad supplemental package that would include aid to Ukraine, Israel and other priorities.

House Speaker Mike Johnson, the top Republican in Congress, is pursuing a stand-alone bill that ties border security provisions directly to Ukraine aid.

(Reporting by David Morgan and Katharine Jackson; editing by Susan Heavey and Mark Heinrich)