Headline RoundupOctober 19th, 2022

Rep. McCarthy Indicates Scaling Back Ukraine Aid if GOP Wins Congress

AllSides Summary

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) indicated that a Republican-controlled Congress might scale back support for Ukraine’s military and civilian population in the ongoing war with Russia, which invaded Ukraine in February. McCarthy voiced support for Ukraine, but called for increased oversight and scrutiny of aid packages, pointing to financial problems faced domestically by American taxpayers.

Key Quotes: McCarthy stated that “I think people are gonna be sitting in a recession and they’re not going to write a blank check to Ukraine. They just won’t do it,” later adding, “It’s not a free blank check. And then there’s the things [Biden] is not doing domestically. Not doing the border and people begin to weigh that. Ukraine is important, but at the same time it can’t be the only thing they do and it can’t be a blank check.” Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) called McCarthy’s comments “disgraceful” and added, “I don't know that I can say I was surprised.”

For Context: Should the Republican Party gain a majority in Congress, McCarthy is expected to be voted Majority Leader. A $12.3 billion additional aid package for Ukraine was part of last month’s government spending bill. The statements come as the war in Ukraine escalates among a string of victories for the Ukrainian military and increasingly nuclear rhetoric from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

How the Media Covered it: Outlets across the spectrum honed in on the “blank check” statement. The Hill categorized opposition to Ukraine support as “America First” ideology.

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