After meeting with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday, Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson doubled down on his commitment to securing America’s borders.
Johnson has asserted that he will not negotiate on aid for Ukraine until the federal government produces a border security plan.
Zelensky is in Washington, DC to persuade U.S. lawmakers to approve more aid for Ukraine’s war endless war with Russia.
So far, the war, which has lasted nearly two years, has cost American taxpayers billions of dollars with no end in sight.
After his meeting with the Ukrainian leader, however, Johnson declared that he is not budging from his position on pairing Ukraine aid and border security reforms.
The speaker also lambasted the White House, accusing Democrat President Joe Biden’s administration of failing to provide a clear strategy on U.S. involvement with Ukraine.
“I have asked the White House since the day that I was handed the gavel as speaker for clarity,” Johnson told reporters after the meeting.
“We need a clear articulation of the strategy to allow Ukraine to win.
“And thus far their responses have been insufficient.
“What the Biden administration seems to be asking for is billions of additional dollars with no appropriate oversight or clear strategy to win, and none of the answers that I think the American people are owed.”
“I have also been very clear from day one, that our first condition on any national security supplemental spending package is about our own national security first,” he added.
Despite the unprecedented levels of aid already received from Americans, Zelensky is demanding U.S. lawmakers approve even more aid for Ukraine.
President Biden has requested about $61 billion for Kyiv’s war effort.
However, getting the funding through Congress has proved an uphill battle with Republicans increasingly skeptical of the continued aid to Ukraine.
With the speaker’s gavel now stripped from Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) grip, the Biden admin is now struggling to find support in the House.
Johnson and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have both made clear that Biden would have to compromise on border and asylum policies to get enough GOP support for his request to pass.
In a statement on Tuesday, Johnson said:
“In the last three months – October, November, December alone – we’ve had more illegal crossings at the border than in any entire year of the Obama administration.
“The American people see this.
“They feel it acutely.”
The White House has warned that Ukraine would soon lose the ability to fend off Russia on the battlefield if the U.S. did not replenish its flow of aid quickly.