Collins, Graham Call for Answers as Administration Withholds Key Israel Assistance


Washington, D.C. – As the top Republicans of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittees overseeing the Departments of Defense and State, U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Secretary of State Antony Blinken calling for answers surrounding the Administration’s decision to withhold certain assistance from Israel. 


Senator Collins is the Vice Chair of the Appropriations Committee and Ranking Member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee and Senator Graham is the Ranking Member of the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee.


“On a bipartisan basis, Congress has repeatedly affirmed its support for Israel and its right to defend itself,” the Senators wrote.  “The enactment last month of the national security supplemental appropriations act, which was approved by Congress overwhelmingly and provides vital assistance to Israel, Ukraine, and our partners in the Indo-Pacific region, is the most recent example of Congress’s strong commitment to Israel as it defends itself following Hamas’ unprovoked invasion and brutality.”


“We were alarmed when we learned from the media, rather than the Administration, that despite the President’s assertion that his commitment to the security of Israel is ‘ironclad,’ certain shipments of munitions intended for Israel are being withheld from delivery,” the Senators continued.


In the letter, Senators Collins and Graham requested responses to questions regarding exactly what arms transfers are currently on hold and what arms transfers the Administration may seek to withhold in the future by May 20, 2024, in advance of Secretary Blinken’s testimony in front of the Senate State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee.


Click HERE to read the full letter.