House Speaker Kevin McCarthy snubbed President Volodymyr Zelensky’s personal invitation to visit Ukraine to get a first-hand look at the situation in the country.
The snub comes amid waning support from Republicans for Kiev.
“Mr. McCarthy, he has to come here to see how we work, what’s happening here…. Then after that, make your assumptions,” Zelensky said in a CNN interview.
“Mr. McCarthy, he has to come here to see how we work, what’s happening here, what war caused us, which people are fighting now, who are fighting now,” Zelensky continued.
“And then after that, make your assumptions,” in words given to Wolf Blitzer.
“I think that Speaker McCarthy, he never visited Kyiv or Ukraine, and I think it would help him with his position,” Zelensky emphasized.
However, Kevin McCarthy snubbed Zelensky’s invitation, saying he does not need to travel to Ukraine to gain the information.
“I will continue to get my briefings and others, but I don’t have to go to Ukraine or Kyiv to see it,’ McCarthy said.
Republican Congressional members have expressed more skepticism over Biden’s Ukraine aid policy, with McCarthy taking a stand against “a blank check” approach to sending billions to the country.
McCarthy gave a firm reiteration of the position he and the Republicans have on Ukraine.
“Let’s be very clear about what I said: no blank checks, OK? So, from that perspective, I don’t have to go to Ukraine to understand where there’s a blank check or not,” McCarthy told CNN.
“I will continue to get my briefings and others, but I don’t have to go to Ukraine or Kyiv to see it. And my point has always been, I won’t provide a blank check for anything.”
Reuters said, “The invitation came as the United States wrestled with a budget deficit and the prospect of possibly hitting its debt limit in coming months.” It adds, “Democratic U.S. President Joe Biden is set to unveil his budget proposal on Thursday.”
The news comes just weeks after Republican firebrand Marjorie Taylor Greene announced she was reintroducing a bill requiring a full audit of billions of taxpayer money sent to Ukraine.
Although the bill previously failed in the House, Greene said the outcome would be different because “I’m introducing this resolution, and I’m looking forward to seeing my Republican colleagues support it.”
MTG also accused the Biden administration of being “so disconnected with what the American people want that they are literally going to lead us into World War III.”
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