Chippewa Falls (WQOW)- A U.S. Senator from Wisconsin is weighing in on the tensions in Egpyt and whether the U.S. should continue to send aid to that country.
There was more bloodshed in Egypt on Monday: the latest in the fight for control of the country between the current military rulers and the Muslim Brotherhood they threw out of power. Militants ambushed two buses carrying off-duty police officers. They forced them to lie on the ground before they shot them; 25 were killed. President Obama has been anxiously monitoring the situation. But on Monday, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel acknowledged there really isn't much the U.S. can do but watch and wait.
"Our ability to influence the outcome in Egypt is limited," Hagel says. "It's up to the Egyptian people.
"The violence that we are seeing in Egypt is untenable and we have to work with our allies in the region and speak out against it," explains Senator Tammy Baldwin.
Egypt is a critical ally in the Middle East. The U.S. gives more than $1 billion in foreign aid there every year. But that funding may be in jeopardy. Some lawmakers have voiced their support to cut aid to Egypt. Baldwin, who was in Chippewa Falls Monday, isn't one of them.
"It needs to be counted upon to preserve the peace between our very close ally Israel and Egypt. I would have a very different view if I felt that there was any sign that Egypt and Israel were not going to remain allies," says Baldwin. "We want to see them head back towards a path for democracy. As soon as possible, I want to see elections scheduled in Egypt. I don't believe that people will view their leadership with legitimacy until they have the opportunity to elect them."
But for now at least, that path is not clear.
Baldwin is a freshman senator. WQOW also asked her about the public's impression of Congress. She says she understands why Congress has such a low approval rating because it has not been able to get very much done and hopes that changes soon.
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