For Thursday September, 2nd, 2021, President Biden has received his daily brief. In a move to throw me, Biden Bits writer, President Biden is scheduled to speak on his Administrations response to Hurricane Ida at 11:30 a.m. D.C., time. This afternoon President Biden will participate in a virtual event with rabbis from around the country to commemorate the Jewish High Holiday.
The White House published a fact-sheet on How the Biden Administration is Supporting Hurricane Ida Response Efforts in the Gulf Coast.
The bullet points:
Approved a Major Disaster Declaration for the State of Louisiana:
- On August 29, President Biden approved a Major Disaster Declaration for the State of Louisiana, authorizing Individual and Public Assistance for impacted parishes and hazard mitigation statewide. It also authorized federal assistance to fully fund emergency debris removal and emergency protective measures for the first 30 days.
Assistance to Disaster Survivors:
- FEMA and the Small Business Administration (SBA) are providing assistance to disaster survivors who have sustained losses from Hurricane Ida. FEMA assistance may include grants to help pay for temporary housing, emergency home repairs, uninsured and underinsured personal property losses, and medical, dental and funeral expenses caused by the disaster, together with other serious disaster-related expenses.
- FEMA has also turned on Critical Needs Assistance, providing $500 to applicants who have immediate or critical needs because they are displaced from their homes as a result of the Major Disaster Declaration the President approved. So far, more than 31,000 households in Louisiana have received a one-time payment.
- The SBA has begun offering low-interest disaster loans to qualified businesses of all sizes, nonprofits, homeowners and renters.
- The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is offering assistance to families living in impacted parishes covered by the major disaster declaration, including providing immediate foreclosure relief; making mortgage insurance available; making insurance available for mortgages and home rehabilitation; sharing information on available providers; and offering additional flexibilities to communities in their administration of HUD programs.
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is reviving its free Operation Blue Roof program to get as many houses into living condition as possible in impacted Parishes in Louisiana during Hurricane Ida recovery. The program provides homeowners in disaster areas with fiber-reinforced sheeting to cover damaged roofs until permanent repairs are made.
- To help disaster survivors register for Federal assistance, Mobile Emergency Response Support assets including Emergency Operations Vehicles are deployed to support Louisiana and Mississippi. This includes an additional six FEMA Mobile Communications Operations Vehicle (MCOVs) equipped with satellite technology that are en route to Louisiana to serve as a mobile command center.
- Individuals in affected areas can apply for disaster assistance and get referrals to local, state and federal agencies and voluntary organizations. The fastest way for anyone in impacted areas to apply for disaster assistance under the Major Disaster Declaration is through DisasterAssistance.gov.
Providing Emergency Support:
- FEMA has already delivered more than 4.5 million meals, 3.6 million liters of water, more than 134,000 tarps, nearly 250 generators to the region, and hundreds of additional ambulances have been transported to Louisiana and Mississippi to assist with medical evacuations and transfer patients from health care facilities impacted by the storm. The Defense Logistics Agency has been activated for leasing of additional generators.
- The Department of Agriculture issued a waiver allowing Louisiana Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants to use their benefits to purchase “hot” or prepared foods through September 28th.
- The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has approximately 100 personnel currently deployed for the Ida response – including one Incident Management Team and two Disaster Medical Assistance Teams. There are also two additional Disaster Medical Assistance Teams and one Joint Patient Movement Team preparing to deploy – bringing the total HHS personnel deployed to 173 by the end of the day.
- HHS is setting-up a 250-bed Federal Medical Station in New Orleans and will provide staffing support via Disaster Medical Assistance Teams.
- HHS is also establishing a patient evacuation site at Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans, to be staffed with a Disaster Medical Assistance Team and Joint Patient Movement Team.
- HHS is also deploying a Disaster Medical Assistance Team to the Thibodaux Regional Health System Hospital in Thibodaux, Louisiana to support a hospital decompression mission. This hospital is one of the only fully operational medical facilities in Terrebonne and Lafourche Parishes.
- 12 Urban Search and Rescue teams are currently operational in Louisiana to support state and local efforts. The teams have completed more than 8,900 structural evaluations.
- The Coast Guard and the Department of Defense are assisting with search and rescue efforts. The Coast Guard had 34 aviation, 26 rotary and 8 fixed-wing search and rescue assets prepositioned, and the Department of Defense has 60 high water vehicles and 14 rotary wing assets that were prepositioned to assist with search and rescue efforts. The National Guard Bureau has 195 high-water vehicles and 23 rotary wing assets prepositioned to assist with search and rescue in Louisiana, and 680 high water vehicles and five rotary wing assets in Mississippi.
- More than 6,000 National Guard soldiers and airmen from Louisiana and 10 other states are responding to the aftermath of Hurricane Ida to support recovery efforts.
- The Army Corps of Engineers activated planning and response teams for debris removal, temporary roofing, and temporary housing in advance of the storm.
Expediting Power Restoration to Impacted Communities:
- The President convened a call with energy sector CEOs to convey to them the specific actions he has directed in response to their requests for support to their power restoration efforts. He emphasized that his Administration is ready to provide help and resources as needed to help expedite power restoration efforts in Louisiana and Mississippi. The Administration is closely coordinating with private electricity sector companies to fully understand the challenges they are facing as a consequence of the storm and identify any means of supporting speedier restoration of power.
- The Federal government is sharing aerial imagery from reconnaissance flights and satellite imagery to support damage assessments for energy infrastructure.
- More than 25,000 linemen and clearance crews from 32 states and D.C are in the region racing to restore power.
- A catastrophic responsive team from the Bonneville Power Administration with expertise in bulk power system transmission operations is on hand under DOE’s coordinating authority to ensure energy companies are supported on behalf of the Federal government and have access to resources as appropriate.
- FEMA personnel are supporting efforts by the State of Louisiana and the National Guard to remove debris and clear roads so restoration workers and equipment can have easier passage and access to downed wires and poles.
- DOE is working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to expedite permitting for rerunning of transmission cable across the Mississippi River and for standing up transmission towers to enable power to get back on line as quickly as possible.
- While assessments are still ongoing to understand the full impact of the storm on transmission lines and towers, FEMA has deployed nearly 250 generators in the region, and FEMA and DOE are working to deliver more generators to expand temporary power to emergency services while supporting efforts to restart Entergy’s Nuclear Waterford 3 plant, where power has been restored.
Increasing the Availability of Gasoline and Easing Price Pressures:
- The Department of Transportation (DOT) has extended and amended an emergency declaration that offers temporary flexibility to how many hours a truck driver can drive. This applies nationally to goods that support the Covid-19 response, and will now include gasoline and other types of fuel and building materials in addition to medical supplies, and food. Because this hurricane is hitting a region that is a key center of the nation’s oil production and refining infrastructure, this waiver should help reduce the risk of gasoline shortages or price increases stemming from the hurricane. DOT’s top priority remains safety, and this waiver is accompanied by additional safety related reporting requirements to allow the department to monitor driver work hours. In addition, DOT has activated the Routing Assistance Hotline to assist first responders.
- The EPA has approved emergency fuel waivers for Louisiana and Mississippi, effective immediately, which will expand the supply of gasoline that can be sold in these two states and increase availability at this critical time. EPA and DOE are continuing to actively monitor the fuel supply situation, and will act expeditiously if extreme and unusual supply circumstances exist in other areas.
- EPA issued a waiver of the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) requirements in Louisiana and Mississippi to help improve the fuel supply circumstances caused by Hurricane Ida. The waiver begins August 30, 2021, and ends September 16, 2021.
- The Federal Railroad Administration activated an Emergency Relief Docket to offer railroads the ability to obtain temporarily waivers to quickly speed up service recovery and restoration to move goods for emergency relief efforts.
- The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued a waiver that gives the United States Coast Guard 8th District and the Environmental Protection Agency flexibility to transport non-radioactive hazardous materials to help with relief efforts in areas impacted by the Hurricane.
- The IRS has announced that it will not impose a penalty when dyed diesel fuel is used or sold for use on highways in a number of parishes in the state of Louisiana. This action expands the availability of diesel for use on Louisiana roads at a critical time for response and recovery efforts. Dyed diesel is not taxed since it is intended for off-highway uses, such as farming equipment, construction vehicles, and home heating. For that reason, use of this fuel on the highways incurs an IRS penalty. The IRS is waiving the penalty in affected parishes within Louisiana, and only the tax that is typically due on diesel will have to be paid by sellers/operators. The waiver will be in effect between August 29, 2021 and September 15, 2021.
Restoring Critical Communications:
- The FCC is working directly with wireless carriers on their implementation of the Wireless Resiliency Cooperative Framework, which allows customers to use any cellular provider to get a cell signal if their provider’s network is down and fosters mutual aid among wireless providers during emergencies. This has helped cell service come back online quicker.
- The FCC provided technical assistance to 911 call centers that were impacted by the storm.
- FEMA is providing temporary cell and radio infrastructure to improve communications.
- The FCC deployed staff to Louisiana in advance of the storm and is sending additional resources to support spectrum management, identify impacts, and prioritize recovery efforts. It is also engaged in daily coordination with industry on the transport of necessary equipment to help fill communications gaps.
President Biden has not tweeted for Thursday, so far; as we know this is likely to change.
When Biden Bits was published President Biden had tweeted 3 times. He added 2 tweets giving him a Wednesday Tweeting Total of 5 tweets and 0 retweets.
His full statement:
Today, a new law takes effect in Texas that directly violates the precedent established in the landmark case of Roe v. Wade. This all-out assault on reproductive health effectively bans abortion for the nearly 7 million Texans of reproductive age. Patients in Texas will now be forced to travel out-of-state or carry their pregnancy to term against their will. This law will dramatically reduce access to reproductive care for women in Texas, particularly for women with low incomes and women of color. It also includes a disturbing provision that incentivizes private citizens to sue anyone who assists another person in receiving an abortion.
The Biden-Harris Administration will always fight to protect access to healthcare and defend a woman’s right to make decisions about her body and determine her future.White House.gov. 09/01/2021.
SB 8 aka Texas Heartbeat Act bans abortions at six weeks. The “law”, though I struggle with that term as the State has said it will not be enforcing the law, private citizens will, but I digress went into effect on Wednesday morning as the Supreme Court along with the federal appeals court declined to freeze the “law” as legal challenges play out, CNN reported.
Since I’m not a lawyer, I’m going to post some thoughts from lawyers regarding the Supreme Court decision not to intervene.
But under SB8, there *are no officials* who enforce the bad law. Instead, private citizens can sue abortion providers and anyone else involved — the clinic receptionist, the volunteer escort, the friend who gave the patient a ride — for $10,000 each plus legal fees.— Andy Piltser-Cowan (@PCLawBoston) September 2, 2021
I wanted to note something about Texas SB8 that’s been my hobbyhorse since this law was proposed, and should give pause *even* to people who want abortion banned. Look at the text of the bill. 1/ pic.twitter.com/hEQ4LkVWye— Raffi Melkonian (@RMFifthCircuit) September 2, 2021
So it creates this cause of action for doing the abortion and aiding and abetting the abortion. Already a huge problem *even if you want abortion banned*. As @jadler1969 has said, imagine this same structure applied to gun rights or the first amendment or whatever else. /2— Raffi Melkonian (@RMFifthCircuit) September 2, 2021
OK, but look at the part I’ve drawn a square around. You can be sued if you *intend to* (but have not) aided or abetted the abortion. That’s *bananas* when applied to constitutional rights.— Raffi Melkonian (@RMFifthCircuit) September 2, 2021
Let’s say someone passes a version of this that bans supporting Trump online. /3 pic.twitter.com/DGEtbeJuFh
Obviously the substance of that is unconstitutional. But imagine you could be sued for “intending” to “aid” someone who supports Trump online. That would open what – literally everyone who is in favor of Trump? – open to suit?— Raffi Melkonian (@RMFifthCircuit) September 2, 2021
And it’s no answer at all to say in response – “well, don’t worry, you can raise the defense of the First Amendment.” That costs money, that puts you at risk, and it chills obviously protected activity.— Raffi Melkonian (@RMFifthCircuit) September 2, 2021
Again, this approach applied to other rights would destroy those rights.
Mike Dunford, streams on Twitch, typically, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, he law explains, followed by video game streaming. You don’t need an account to watch, you only need an account to comment or ask questions. Be reminded, that Dunford, is a lawyer, but he isn’t your lawyer.
Also note that Boston Lawyer Andy’s, thread, is much longer than I posted. If you are unable to see the whole thread, please drop a line in the comment section, and I’ll post more of his tweets there.
This morning the President reacted to the Supreme Courts decision:
The Supreme Court’s ruling overnight is an unprecedented assault on a woman’s constitutional rights under Roe v. Wade, which has been the law of the land for almost fifty years. By allowing a law to go into effect that empowers private citizens in Texas to sue health care providers, family members supporting a woman exercising her right to choose after six weeks, or even a friend who drives her to a hospital or clinic, it unleashes unconstitutional chaos and empowers self-anointed enforcers to have devastating impacts. Complete strangers will now be empowered to inject themselves in the most private and personal health decisions faced by women. This law is so extreme it does not even allow for exceptions in the case of rape or incest. And it not only empowers complete strangers to inject themselves into the most private of decisions made by a woman—it actually incentivizes them to do so with the prospect of $10,000 if they win their case. For the majority to do this without a hearing, without the benefit of an opinion from a court below, and without due consideration of the issues, insults the rule of law and the rights of all Americans to seek redress from our courts. Rather than use its supreme authority to ensure justice could be fairly sought, the highest Court of our land will allow millions of women in Texas in need of critical reproductive care to suffer while courts sift through procedural complexities. The dissents by Chief Justice Roberts, and Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan all demonstrate the error of the Court’s action here powerfully.
While the Chief Justice was clear to stress that the action by the Supreme Court is not a final ruling on the future of Roe, the impact of last night’s decision will be immediate and requires an immediate response. One reason I became the first president in history to create a Gender Policy Council was to be prepared to react to such assaults on women’s rights. Hence, I am directing that Council and the Office of the White House Counsel to launch a whole-of-government effort to respond to this decision, looking specifically to the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice to see what steps the Federal Government can take to ensure that women in Texas have access to safe and legal abortions as protected by Roe, and what legal tools we have to insulate women and providers from the impact of Texas’ bizarre scheme of outsourced enforcement to private parties.White House.gov. 09/02/2021.
The below YouTube is the pool spray prior to the meeting with Ukraine President Zelenskyy. Their full remarks can be found here.
Thirty years after the restoration of Ukraine’s independence, the bonds between the United States and Ukraine are stronger than ever. Our shared values and commitment to a Europe that is whole, free, democratic, and at peace provide the basis for our strategic partnership. We are working together to address shared global challenges, including energy security and diversification, climate change, and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Our relationship serves as a cornerstone for security, democracy, and human rights in Ukraine and the broader region. We are committed to Ukraine’s implementation of the deep and comprehensive reforms necessary to fulfill its European and Euro-Atlantic aspirations. We are also united in our commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of continued Russian aggression.
Ukraine’s success is central to the global struggle between democracy and autocracy. As we face this challenge together, we stand shoulder-to-shoulder, optimistic about our ambitious common goals to advance democracy, deliver justice, enhance prosperity, and bolster security for Ukraine. Ukraine has achieved progress in building institutions with integrity and intends, with U.S. support, to continue to counter corruption, ensure accountability, safeguard human rights, realize the aspirations of its citizens, and create favorable conditions for attracting foreign direct investment and driving growth.
The United States and Ukraine are reinvigorating the Strategic Partnership Commission (SPC), reoriented and resourced to meet 21st century challenges. To memorialize the elevated status of our partnership, the U.S. Secretary of State and the Ukrainian Foreign Minister intend to approve a new Charter at the SPC’s meeting in Washington this fall.White House.gov. 09/01/2021.
I. Security and Defense
In the 21st century, nations cannot be allowed to redraw borders by force.Russia violated this ground rule in Ukraine.Sovereign states have the right to make their own decisions and choose their own alliances. The United States stands with Ukraine and will continue to work to hold Russia accountable for its aggression. America’s support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is unwavering.
- Standing up to Russian Aggression: Russia’s aggression, including the war in eastern Ukraine and its seizure of Crimea, has claimed more than 14,000 Ukrainian lives, destabilized Europe and the Black Sea region, and threatened the global rules-based order. The United States does not and will never recognize Russia’s purported annexation of Crimea and reaffirms its full support for international efforts, including in the Normandy Format, aimed at negotiating a diplomatic resolution to the Russian-led conflict in eastern Ukraine on the basis of international law, including the UN Charter. The United States supports Ukraine’s efforts to use the Crimea Platform to focus international attention and action on the humanitarian and security costs of Russia’s occupation of Crimea with the aim of peacefully restoring Ukraine’s control over this territory in accordance with international law. Together, we call on Russia to recommit to the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine and engage genuinely in conflict resolution efforts to end the war.
- Deepening Strategic Defense Cooperation: The United States and Ukraine have finalized a Strategic Defense Framework that creates a foundation for the enhancement of U.S.-Ukraine strategic defense and security cooperation and the advancement of shared priorities, including implementing defense and defense industry reforms, deepening cooperation in areas such as Black Sea security, cyber defense, and intelligence sharing, and countering Russian aggression.
- Supporting Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Aspirations: As the United States and Allies reaffirmed in the June 2021 NATO Summit Communique, the United States supports Ukraine’s right to decide its own future foreign policy course free from outside interference, including with respect to Ukraine’s aspirations to join NATO. We also remain committed to assisting Ukraine with ongoing reforms.
- Providing Ukraine with Security Assistance: The United States is announcing a new $60 million security assistance package, including additional Javelin anti-armor systems and other defensive lethal and non-lethal capabilities, to enable Ukraine to more effectively defend itself against Russian aggression. The United States has committed $2.5 billion in support of Ukraine’s forces since 2014, including more than $400 million this year alone.
- Cooperating on R&D: The United States and Ukraine have finalized a Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation Agreement that provides a framework for pursuing bilateral armaments and military-technical cooperation.
- Enacting Defense and Security Sector Reforms: The United States welcomes Ukraine’s continued progress on defense and defense industry reforms, including the adoption of a new defense industry strategy. We intend to continue our robust training and exercise program in keeping with Ukraine’s status as a NATO Enhanced Opportunities Partner. Ukraine plans to continue taking steps to enhance democratic civilian control of the military, reform the security services, and modernize its defense acquisition process to advance its Euro-Atlantic aspirations. The United States supports Ukraine’s plan to reform the Security Service of Ukraine by streamlining and clearly defining its authorities and strengthening regulations that protect human rights and provide for effective public oversight.
- Collaborating on Cybersecurity: The United States and Ukraine prioritize cybersecurity issues at the leadership level. In October, the U.S. and Ukrainian governments plan to hold the 4th U.S.-Ukraine Bilateral Cyber Dialogue in Kyiv to bolster bilateral cybersecurity cooperation, information sharing, and U.S. support for Ukraine’s cybersecurity capacity building, including in Ukraine’s financial sector.
- Increasing Situational Awareness in Space: The United States and Ukraine have signed a Space Situational Awareness MOU that enables more effective information sharing on space objects detected by satellites and ground sensors to facilitate space flight safety.
- Enhancing Risk and Cooperative Threat Reduction: The United States and Ukraine have reached agreement on maintaining a secure 24/7 communications link through the National and Nuclear Risk Reduction Center. We have also agreed to a seven-year extension of the Agreement Regarding Assistance to Ukraine in the Elimination of Strategic Nuclear Arms, and the Prevention of Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction, signed in 1993, to support mutual nonproliferation objectives and bolster regional and international security.
II. Democracy, Justice, and Human Rights
The United States and Ukraine are bound by the universal values that unite the free people of the world: democracy, human rights, the rule of law. We also recognize that living up to these values at home is essential to defending and advancing them around the world. Despite Russia’s continuing aggression, Ukraine has made progress in implementing comprehensive democratic and human rights reforms. With U.S. support, Ukraine is pursuing a reform agenda to transform the country in line with European and Euro-Atlantic principles and practices.
- Reforming the Judiciary and Combatting Corruption: Building upon the passage of judicial reform legislation, Ukraine plans to overhaul its judicial sector in line with international best practices. At the same time, Ukraine intends to build on the successful establishment of its independent anti-corruption infrastructure to implement critical initiatives that protect the independence and improve the effectiveness of these institutions in rooting out corruption and holding corrupt actors accountable. These steps include promptly selecting a new Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor consistent with international best practices, and passing legislation to safeguard the authority of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine director as well as ensure a transparent and credible process for selecting a successor. United States’ assistance and advisory programs support these strategic reform initiatives.
- Advancing Human Rights: With U.S. support, Ukraine will continue to advance respect for human rights, civil liberties, and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international standards and obligations, as well as to fight racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, and discrimination against the LGBTQI+ community. Ukraine plans to strengthen accountability for violence against all persons regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or political views, including through legislation. Ukraine and the United States intend to continue holding Russia accountable for ongoing systemic abuses in the territories of Ukraine controlled or occupied by Russia and to seek the release of political prisoners and hostages held in these territories.
- Investing in Ukraine’s Reform Agenda: Governance reform is critical to ensuring democracy delivers for the people. Ukraine has committed to prioritizing reforms that strengthen its democratic institutions, bolster human rights, and deliver justice. To that end, Ukraine is developing an ambitious and comprehensive Plan of Transformation, which will be considered at the next SPC meeting. In support of Ukraine’s reform efforts, the U.S. government has provided Ukraine with nearly $2 billion in development assistance since 2014 and plans to allocate over $463 million in assistance this year, including for programs focused on democracy, human rights, local governance and decentralization, privatization, and judicial reform.
III. Energy Security and Climate
The climate crisis has reached a critical point that demands urgent action, which we are both addressing. The United States and Ukraine are advancing Ukraine’s energy security through sustainable, effective, and long-lasting policy solutions backed up by ongoing corporate governance reform.
- Establishing a Strategic Energy and Climate Dialogue: The United States and Ukraine intend to bolster collaboration on shared energy and climate goals through a reinvigorated Strategic Energy and Climate Dialogue, which will provide a strong platform to advance energy security objectives, enhance economic ties, and achieve ambitious climate targets.
- Attracting Energy Sector Investment Through Reform: Ukraine and the United States intend to utilize their strategic energy dialogue to address systemic imbalances in the Ukrainian energy system, expand corporate governance reform at state-owned energy companies, increase the attractiveness of Ukraine’s energy industry, and attract the foreign investment needed to achieve energy independence, decarbonization, and clean energy goals.
- Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Promoting Innovation: Ukraine and the United States have both reaffirmed their intent to achieve ambitious reductions in their national greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 as communicated through our respective Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). Ukraine has joined the Agricultural Innovation Mission (AIM) for Climate and intends to develop renewable energy in a financially responsible manner.
- Addressing the Impact of Nord Stream 2: The United States and Ukraine continue to oppose Nord Stream 2, which we view as a threat to European energy security. The United States intends to continue using measures envisaged in legislation and energy diplomacy, including through the recent appointment of a senior advisor for energy security, to maintain Ukraine’s transit role and security of supply during this period of energy transition and to prevent the Kremlin’s use of energy as a geopolitical weapon. The U.S. and Ukrainian governments support efforts to increase capacity for gas supplies to Ukraine from diversified sources.
IV. Economic Growth and Prosperity
Ukraine must be strong enough economically to choose its own future and to bend the arc of its national history toward greater justice and opportunity for the Ukrainian people. Ukraine’s continued adoption and implementation of reforms are critical to ensuring that its economy delivers for the people.
- Implementing Key Reforms: In alignment with Ukraine’s International Monetary Fund program, Ukraine intends to reform state-owned enterprises, protect central bank independence, strengthen financial sector supervision, and create a fair business and investment environment. The United States intends to continue working with Ukraine to support these efforts and promote robust and inclusive economic growth in both the U.S. and Ukrainian economies.
- Expanding Commercial Cooperation: The United States and Ukraine have finalized a Memorandum of Understanding on commercial cooperation, designed to promote commercial participation by U.S companies across the Ukrainian economy and by Ukrainian companies across the U.S. economy.
- Providing Sufficient Funding for Growth: The United States and Ukraine have signed an MOU, which may support future transactions in identified sectors, including several key projects under discussion. The initial amount of $3 billion in support from the Export-Import Bank (EXIM) of the United States for these potential transactions may be increased as the pipeline of projects in agribusiness, infrastructure, climate, and energy develops.
- Growing Trade and Investment: The U.S.-Ukraine Trade and Investment Council is holding its 10th meeting this fall to confirm work plans to avoid regulatory barriers, eliminate the use of unlicensed software by Ukrainian government agencies, address other intellectual property issues, and cooperate on labor issues. Ukraine is also committed to passing legislation establishing a robust investment screening process. Ukraine and the United States plan to review the operation of the Trade and Investment Cooperation Agreement at the fall meeting of the Council.
V. Pandemic Response and Humanitarian Assistance
The United States has been a steadfast supporter of the Ukrainian people in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and humanitarian needs resulting from the war in eastern Ukraine.
- Fighting COVID-19: The United States has provided approximately $55 million in COVID-19 related assistance and donated nearly 2.2 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Ukraine. The United States intends to provide additional assistance to Ukraine, to include cold chain storage support and an additional $12.8 million in COVID-related assistance drawn from the America Rescue Plan Act.
- Humanitarian Assistance: The ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine has left 3.4 million people in need of humanitarian aid. Since 2014, the United States has provided over $306 million in life-saving assistance to help Ukrainians in need, spanning food, shelter, safe drinking water, and protection for the most vulnerable, including the elderly. The U.S. government will provide an additional $45 million in humanitarian assistance to Ukraine this year.
President Biden’s remarks are scheduled for 11:30 a.m. D.C., time. He’s typically late…
The press briefing is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. D.C., time.
As predicted, President Biden has now tweeted. Now, in my defense, I believed he’d tweet the live feed for his remarks, then the Supreme Court decision tweet. I believed wrong.
The Supreme Court’s ruling overnight is an unprecedented assault on constitutional rights under Roe v. Wade. Complete strangers will now be empowered to inject themselves in the most private of health decisions. The law does not even allow exceptions in cases of rape or incest.— President Biden (@POTUS) September 2, 2021
Rather than use its supreme authority to ensure justice could be fairly sought, the highest Court of our land will allow millions in Texas in need of critical reproductive care to suffer while courts sift through procedural complexities.— President Biden (@POTUS) September 2, 2021
The dissents by Chief Justice Roberts, and Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan all demonstrate the error of the Court's action here powerfully.— President Biden (@POTUS) September 2, 2021
I am launching a whole-of-government effort to respond to this decision — looking specifically to HHS and DOJ to see what steps the federal government can take to insulate those in Texas from this law and ensure access to safe and legal abortions as protected by Roe.— President Biden (@POTUS) September 2, 2021
I already posted the full statement from President Biden above.
The White House will provide a transcript for his remarks, later today.