House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Tuesday that he would question Ukrainian President Volodoymr Zelensky about the money the US has spent on the war in Ukraine when the two meet later this week.
When asked if he would commit to more aid for Ukraine, McCarthy said, “Is Zelenskyy elected to Congress? Is he our president? I don’t think I have to commit anything and I think I have questions for him.”
“Where’s the accountability on the money we’ve already spent? What is the plan for victory? I think that’s what the American public wants to know,” McCarthy added.
Zelensky is headed to Washington after the UN General Assembly in New York and is expected to press Congress to authorize the additional $24 billion in spending on the war that President Biden has requested.
The White House wants Congress to include the new Ukraine aid in a stop-gap funding bill that needs to pass before September 30 to avert a government shutdown. But the resolution McCarthy has put forward does not include the Ukraine spending, angering Democrats.
“And with no Ukraine funding, the proposal is an insult to Ukraine and a gift to Putin. I cannot think of a worse welcome for Zelensky who visits us this week than this House proposal, which ignores Ukraine entirely,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on Monday.
Since McCarthy’s resolution does not include the Ukraine funding, it has no chance of passing the Senate. He has also expressed doubt that it will make it through the House since some more conservative GOP members in the House oppose the bill due to the spending levels.