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Beyer Votes To Expedite Military Aid To Ukraine Via WWII-Era Lend-Lease Program, Establish Process for Confiscating Russian Oligarchs’ Assets To Fund Ukraine Reconstruction

Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) this week voted to revive a WWII program via the Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act to accelerate delivery of urgently-needed security aid to the people of Ukraine as they continue to repel Russia’s unprovoked invasion. The bill, which will streamline the shipment of weapons systems, ammunition and other equipment to Ukraine, previously passed in the Senate and now heads to President Biden’s desk for signature. Beyer also voted for the Asset Seizure for Ukraine Reconstruction Act, which would establish a constitutional process for seizing the assets of corrupt Russian oligarchs to support the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine. That bill passed in the House with bipartisan support.

“This week the House took strong action to stand with Ukraine against Russian aggression, action I voted to support,” said Rep. Beyer. “The bill just enacted by Congress will expedite the delivery of weapons, ammunition and equipment that Ukraine urgently needs to defend civilians and repel Russian forces. Separate legislation also passed by the House would facilitate the seizure and sale of Russian oligarchs’ yachts, jets and mansions, to provide resources that Ukraine will need to rebuild. In partnership with President Biden and our allies, I will continue working with my colleagues in Congress to support the people of Ukraine and hold Putin to account.”

During World War II, President Roosevelt’s lend-lease program delivered critical military aid to our allies defending democracy in Europe and around the world, helping to turn the tide of the war. The Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act enhances President Biden’s authority to provide similar support to Ukraine. This legislation directs the Administration to establish expedited procedures for delivering military equipment to Ukraine within 60 days of its enactment. Additionally, it temporarily waives several restrictions on lend-lease agreements with Ukraine.

The Asset Seizure for Ukraine Reconstruction Act will establish a federal interagency working group to identify mechanisms for seizing sanctioned Russian oligarchs’ property valued over $2 million.  The sale of these assets will be used to fund relief for the people of Ukraine, including:

  • Post-conflict reconstruction
  • Military, humanitarian and economic assistance
  • Refugee support and resettlement
  • Technology ensuring the free flow of information in Ukraine

This week’s votes followed the passage of $13.6 billion in humanitarian, military and economic assistance for the people of Ukraine earlier this year, adding to over $1.4 billion in assistance that the United States has provided to Ukraine since 2021.  Congress has also taken steps to isolate Russia from the global economy, including the suspension of permanent normal trade relations and a ban on the import of Russian oil and energy products into the United States. Congress also voted to reauthorize the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, and the House has advanced the Ukraine War Crimes Act to ensure that perpetrators of war crimes against Ukraine can be brought to justice.