House

Hoyer tells Israel removal of Iron Dome funding is ‘technical postponement’

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) on Tuesday told Israel’s foreign minister that the removal of funding for the country’s Iron Dome from Democrats’ government funding bill is a “technical postponement” and promised that the resources will be transferred “soon.”

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid revealed on Twitter on Tuesday that he had spoken with Hoyer.

He said Hoyer pledged that funding for the Iron Dome would be transferred soon, and that he thanked the Maryland Democrat for his commitment. Lapid also emphasized the importance of approving the funding as soon as possible to protect Israel’s security needs.

The communication between Hoyer and Lapid came after House Democrats removed $1 billion in funding for Israel’s Iron Dome from their continuing resolution, which is needed to keep the federal government running through Dec. 3.

Some progressives had objected to the funding and threatened to tank the consequential bill if it was included.

Government funding is set to expire on Sept. 30, putting the country at risk of a shutdown unless Congress approves a new funding measure by that date.

A spokesperson for House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) said the funding for the Iron Dome “will be included in the final, bipartisan and bicameral” defense funding bill later this year.

A spokesperson for Hoyer said the congressman “believed, and continues to believe, that it is important to urgently fund the Iron Dome request to ensure our ally Israel has the ability and resources to defend itself amid growing tensions in the region,” adding that he is committed to finding other ways to ensure the funding is delivered to Israel.

Hoyer announced that he plans to bring a standalone bill to the House floor later this week that would ensure the $1 billion for the Iron Dome is authorized, which he expects will pass on a bipartisan basis.

“I intend to bring it to the floor, and it will be done,” Hoyer said.

The decision to nix the Iron Dome funding from the continuing resolution created a fracture point in the Democratic Party, with some members expressing opposition to the move.

Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-N.Y.) said “only in a morally inverted universe would this be considered a ‘controversy.’”

Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.) wrote that the Iron Dome is a “defensive system used by one of our closest allies to save civilian lives. It needs to be replenished because thousands of rockets were fired by the Hamas terrorists who control Gaza.”

“Consider this my pushing back against this decision,” he added.

Cristina Marcos contributed to this report.

Tags Elissa Slotkin Rosa DeLauro Steny Hoyer Ted Deutch
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