Republican members of Congress who refused to hold then-President Donald Trump accountable for delaying congressionally approved military aid to Ukraine are now criticizing President Biden for not providing more military aid to the nation.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), a fierce opponent of impeaching Trump for trying to extort Ukraine into digging up dirt on Joe Biden ahead of the 2020 election, had the nerve to blame Biden for not doing enough to equip Ukraine. “The challenge that we have is, it’s the actions that we could have done before from this administration to make sure today wasn’t happening,” McCarthy said Tuesday on Fox & Friends. “We could have supplied the weapons to Ukraine. They’re not asking for American troops, they’re just asking for the ability to fight.”
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McCarthy added that Ukraine has been “outgunned” by Russia and said that “we could have deterred this from ever happening.”
Kevin McCarthy, who staunchly opposed Trump's impeachment for using military aide to extort Ukraine, complains without irony on Fox & Friends that America didn't do enough to arm Ukraine pic.twitter.com/cermvZ3YS5
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 1, 2022
According to Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, the U.S. has committed more than $1 billion in total security assistance to Ukraine in the past year alone. That includes an additional $350 million defense aid package for Ukraine approved by Biden last week. Compare that to Trump who, while he was president, slow-walked $250 million in military aid to Ukraine in a quid pro quo scheme to strong-arm President Volodymyr Zelensky into manufacturing dirt on Biden and his family.
Another Republican who fought against impeaching Trump for attempting to extort Ukraine’s president, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), spoke in a video on Tuesday about “the importance of our security partnership between our two countries to counter Russian aggression.”
Stefanik said she is working to “increase military support for the Ukrainian armed forces and establish strong and effective deterrents to counter Putin’s hostility.”
— Rep. Elise Stefanik (@RepStefanik) March 1, 2022
Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-Ind.), the first Ukrainian-born member of Congress, addressed the Republican conference meeting on Tuesday morning, Punchbowl’s Jake Sherman reported. In her remarks, Spartz called Putin’s invasion a genocide rather than a war and said she still has family in the country. Rather than sending troops, which she said Ukraine doesn’t want, she advocated for delivering weapons to the country, which would help Ukrainians to fight the Russians themselves. Spartz was not in Congress during Trump’s first impeachment. According to Sherman, Spartz’s comments received a standing ovation from her colleagues.
Russia on Monday continued its attack on Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second largest city, deploying missiles to residential areas and Freedom Square in the city’s center. As of Tuesday, a 40-mile Russian Army convoy is nearing the capital city of Kyiv, where residents have prepared Molotov cocktails to use in self-defense.
In a speech to the European Union on Tuesday, Zelensky called the attack on Kharkiv civilians a “war crime.” “We are fighting just for our land and for our freedom,” Zelensky said through an English-language interpreter who became choked up while translating the speech. “Despite the fact that all of the cities of our country are blocked. Nobody is going to enter and intervene with our freedom and country.”
Translator chokes up as Zelensky addresses the European Parliament: "Nobody is going to break us. We are strong. We are Ukrainians. We have a desire to see our children alive. I think it's a fair one." pic.twitter.com/AqOzmMPuFx
— Zach Basu (@zacharybasu) March 1, 2022
“We have proven our strength,” Zelensky continued. “So do prove that you are with us. Prove that you will not let us go.”
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