Will the Iron Dome get replenished? House lawmakers push for it

"We must ensure that the Iron Dome is equipped to protect Israel without the risk that it could be overwhelmed," a bipartisan letter to Joe Biden read.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) administers the oath of office to House members and delegates of the U.S. House of Representatives at the start of the 116th Congress inside the House Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., January 3, 2019 (photo credit: KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS)
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) administers the oath of office to House members and delegates of the U.S. House of Representatives at the start of the 116th Congress inside the House Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., January 3, 2019
(photo credit: KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS)

WASHINGTON – A bipartisan group of 87 House members sent a letter on Monday to US President Joe Biden, urging him to “specifically request that Congress include supplemental funding for Israel’s Iron Dome in an appropriations bill enacted before the year’s end – including in any anomalies you may request to a new continuing resolution.” The bill to replenish Iron Dome was blocked last month in the Senate due to Sen. Rand Paul’s opposition.

The lawmakers wrote that replenishing Israel’s Iron Dome interceptors and expanding its missile-defense system is a “critical investment that will protect both Israeli and Palestinian lives and homes, as well as America’s national security interests.” They noted that their letter is coming at the heels of the looming December 3 appropriations deadline.

New Jersey Congressman Josh Gottheimer spearheaded the letter. He was joined by members from both parties, such as Elaine Luria, Brad Schneider, Tom Malinowski, Conor Lamb, Abigail Spanberger, Elissa Slotkin, and others.

“After terrorists in Gaza fired more than 4,000 rockets at civilians in Israel over just 11 days, the House of Representatives passed the Iron Dome Supplemental Appropriations (H.R.5323) by an overwhelming bipartisan margin,” they wrote. “This critical legislation would replenish Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile batteries. Unfortunately, Senator Rand Paul has blocked the bill from coming to the Senate floor, jeopardizing civilian lives and the security of our key ally Israel in its time of need.

Iron Dome missile interceptors (left) launch at Hamas rockets (right) on their way from the Gaza Strip into Israel last week. (credit: ANAS BABA/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES)Iron Dome missile interceptors (left) launch at Hamas rockets (right) on their way from the Gaza Strip into Israel last week. (credit: ANAS BABA/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES)

“We must ensure that the Iron Dome is equipped to protect Israel without the risk that it could be overwhelmed, or its stockpile of interceptors depleted,” the letter reads. “Israel must always have the resources it needs to defend itself from incoming terrorist rockets.”

The lawmakers added, “We ask that you also include this life-saving funding in any appropriations anomalies you request from Congress.”