Republicans will continue to support Ukraine in its fight against Russia when they take control of the House but will demand accountability from Kyiv rather than simply providing a blank check, Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas said Sunday.
Mr. McCaul, the likely next chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said on ABC’s “This Week” that bipartisan support for Ukraine will continue despite opposition from some of his fellow House Republicans.
“I think the majorities on both sides of the aisle support this effort. The fact is, we are going to provide more oversight, transparency, and accountability,” he said.
The Pentagon last week announced an additional $400 million drawdown from U.S. stocks to meet Ukraine’s security and defense needs.
It includes munitions for the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS) and High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), 200 precision-guided 155mm artillery rounds, 10,000 120mm mortar rounds, High-speed Anti-Radiation Missiles (HARMS) and other items, such as 150 Humvees and 150 heavy machine guns with thermal sights to take on Russian drones.
“With Russia’s unrelenting and brutal missile and (drone) attacks on Ukrainian critical energy infrastructure, additional air defense capabilities remain an urgent priority,” the Pentagon said in a statement. “The additional munitions for NASAMS and heavy machine guns will help Ukraine counter these urgent threats.”
SEE ALSO: Build the wall? Finland plans border fence with Russia as NATO membership looms
The U.S. has committed almost $20 billion in weapons and other equipment to Ukraine since Russia invaded on Feb. 24.
Mr. McCaul said members of Congress were given little time to go through the details of recent security assistance packages to Kyiv.
“To be honest, a lot of this went to backfill our stockpiles,” he said. “The Republicans are not going to rule like that. We have a voice now and we’re going to do this in an accountable way, with transparency to the American people.”
He criticized the Biden administration for how long it has taken to send heavy weapons into Ukraine.
“Since the invasion, we slow-walked this process. First, it was Stingers, then it was Javelins, then HIMARS,” Mr. McCaul told ABC anchor Martha Raddatz. “Drones are going into Crimea and the Ukrainians can’t hit [them] unless they have longer-range artillery.”
Mr. McCaul and other Ukraine supporters have called for the Pentagon to send Kyiv the MGM-140 Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS), which can hit targets up to 190 miles away.
“For some reason, they will not put those weapons into Ukraine,” he said. “When we give them what they need, they win. If we don’t, it’s going to be a long, protracted war.”