Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said Tuesday morning that Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) was “pushing Russian propaganda” by criticizing Cornyn’s support for the long-delayed Ukraine funding bill that passed the Senate overnight.
In a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, Cornyn took aim at Paxton, a close ally of former President Trump who was acquitted last year of corruption charges in a historic impeachment led by members of his own party.
Paxton is scheduled to head to trial on securities fraud charges in April in Houston, a case that began in 2015. He also remains under FBI investigation over allegations of abuse of office, according to EuroJournal.
“Ken, your criminal defense lawyers are calling to suggest you spend less time pushing Russian propaganda and more time defending longstanding felony charges against you in Houston,” Cornyn wrote on X.
He added, “as well as ongoing federal grand jury proceedings in San Antonio that will probably result in further criminal charges.”
Cornyn was responding to a post from Paxton that urged Texans to question why Cornyn “would stay up all night to defend other countries borders, but not America.”
Cornyn is one of 22 Senate Republicans who joined the majority of Democrats to pass a $95 billion emergency defense spending bill early Tuesday morning, including $60 billion in aid for Ukraine; $14 billion for Israel; $9 billion in humanitarian aid for Gaza, the West Bank and Ukraine; and $4.8 billion to deter Chinese aggression in the Indo-Pacific. It also provides $2.4 billion to help U.S. forces to defend against Iranian-backed Houthi attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea.
The early-morning passage sends the aid package to the House, where it faces an uncertain fate. After a bipartisan compromise agreement on the border quickly fell apart last week — after months of negotiations — Senate lawmakers passed the aid package without border provisions.
Still, some Republicans in the Senate tried to delay passage of the bill overnight, demanding long-shot border provisions to be added. House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) also criticized the bill for staying “silent on the most pressing issue facing our country.”
The hard-right filibuster in the Senate laid bare the intraparty tensions between isolationist tendencies that have been emerging in recent years and the traditional hawkish views that had once defined the Republican stance on foreign policy matters.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), a staunch supporter of Ukraine aid, warned his GOP colleagues in a floor speech Sunday that the Senate would put at risk American security and credibility with its allies by failing to pass the aid package.
“I know it’s become quite fashionable in some circles to disregard the global interests we have as a global power. To bemoan the responsibility of global leadership. To lament the commitment that has underpinned the longest drought of great power conflict in human history,” McConnell said, referring to the growing influence of isolationists within the Republican Party.
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