President Joe Biden is asking Congress to approve $24 billion more in aid for Ukraine, which would bring the total amount of U.S. taxpayer-funded aid to Ukraine since February 2022 to $135 billion.
The $95 million is less than one-tenth of one percent of the $135 billion that Biden is seeking to spend on aid to Ukraine in a war that has no end in sight.
The announcement came after Biden offered Maui households affected by the fire a one-time payment of $700 each — less than the $900 each household spends on the Ukraine war, according to a calculation by a budget expert at the Heritage Foundation.
“That’s laughable,” said Dale Hermo-Fernandez in a phone interview from Maui. “I mean, that’s laughable. The government should have engaged the unemployment for these people the first week [and] give them $700 hours a week on top of that, to help them,” he said.
“Just like how they did during the COVID…That would help them get on their feet. There should be an emergency subsidy in the unemployment just to help people stay on their feet because they have nowhere to go to,” he said.
According to preliminary figures from the University of Hawaii’s Pacific Disaster Center and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, it will cost more than $5.52 billion to rebuild Lahaina, which was destroyed in the fires.
Thousands of Lahaina residents are currently homeless and living in temporary housing. Earlier this week, a Hungarian company sent 60 fold-up homes to Maui, the first batch of 250 it hopes to send by October.
Meanwhile, the Department of Defense announced this week that it is sending another package of military assistance to Ukraine worth $250 million. That amount was about 16 times more than the $16 million in assistance the Biden administration claimed it had already provided to 4,200 households.
In July, at a NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, Biden boasted that the U.S. has given more money to Ukraine than all the other nations combined.