Sen. Ted Cruz teamed up Thursday with — of all people — Sen. Lindsey Graham to introduce a resolution to defund the United Nations unless it reverses a recently passed measure condemning Israeli settlement activity.
“Twenty-two percent of the money to fund the U.N. comes from the American taxpayer,” Graham noted during a joint interview with his fellow senator that morning on MSNBC. “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.”
“The only way to get their attention — we can give speeches, we can pass resolutions and the U.N. is going to ignore what we say; but if you cut off their money, that gets their attention,” Cruz added. “And I think we’ve real prospects of seeing this thing move through Congress and actually turning this thing around.”
You can see their comments here:
According to the Washington Examiner, though Graham and Cruz launched the bill together, it was ultimately the brainchild of the Texas senator, who reportedly came up with it shortly after the December vote by the U.N.
The beef that Graham and Cruz — as well as other conservatives — had with the U.N. was that the resolution it passed on Dec. 23 had declared Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem and West Bank illegal. The goal was to force the U.N. to reverse this decision by cutting off its funding.
Speaking on Fox News the same morning, Cruz added, “What brings us together today is an issue that that I think really unites — it unites Republicans, but it ought to unite Democrats, it does unite Americans — and that’s standing with Israel.”
The plan made sense, as much of the U.N.’s funding came from the United States, as noted two years ago by Fox News: ” Each year the United States gives approximately $8 billion in mandatory payments and voluntary contributions to the United Nations and its affiliated organizations … If that seems like a lot, it is — far more than anyone else pays.”
In other words, were the U.S. to cut funding to the international body, its effects would be sharply felt.