U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC, is teaming up with Texas Sen. Ted Cruz to introduce a bill defunding the United Nations until the Security Council repeals a resolution condemning Israeli settlements on the West Bank.
Graham and Cruz introduced the bill in the Senate on Thursday, according to a report in the Washington Examiner. If approved, the bill could cost the UN around $8 billion annually.
“Twenty-two percent of the money to fund the UN comes from the American taxpayer,” Graham said. “I don't think it's a good investment for the American taxpayer to give money to an organization that condemns the only democracy in the Middle East.”
Last month, the UN Security Council approved a resolution condemning Israel’s practice of building settlements in the occupied West Bank, land Palestinians claim for their future state. The UN maintains the settlements violate international law.
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The outgoing Obama administration could have vetoed the resolution but abstained on the vote, allowing it to pass 14-0. The move attracted criticism from President-elect Donald Trump and other Republicans, including Graham. The House voted overwhelmingly last week to rebuke the UN for the Security Council vote.
“This was John Kerry and Obama taking a slap at Israel, and we're going to push back,” Graham said.
The move comes only a week before S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley will appear on Capitol Hill for a confirmation hearing to become the next U.S. ambassador to the UN once Trump becomes president.
Read more on the proposal here.