House Republicans introduced legislation on Monday targeting Russia over its military buildup near Ukraine as officials from Washington and Moscow meet to discuss the Kremlin's security demands.
The Guaranteeing Ukrainian Autonomy by Reinforcing its Defense Act, or GUARD Act, would move to bolster Kyiv’s defense capabilities and reject some of Russia’s demands.
President BidenJoe BidenDeputy AG: DOJ investigating fake Trump electors On The Money — Vaccine-or-test mandate for businesses nixed Warner tests positive for breakthrough COVID-19 case MORE has faced bipartisan calls to take a tougher stance on Russia amid its military posturing, and Republicans have criticized the president for what they call a weak response to the Kremlin.
“This legislation firmly rejects this pattern of weakness that has dangerously emboldened Putin by immediately providing Ukraine with the support it needs to ensure the Kremlin understands a further invasion of Ukraine would come at a terrible cost,” Rep. Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulNew Mexico Democrat tests positive for COVID-19 breakthrough case Warner tests positive for breakthrough COVID-19 case Fiscal conservatives should support postal reform MORE (R-Texas) ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said in a statement.
“Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinActing U.S. ambassador to Ukraine: Embassy families evacuated out of 'abundance of caution' Overnight Energy & Environment — 'Forever chemical' suits face time crunch US shipment of military equipment, munitions arrives in Ukraine MORE must take note that Congress will not stand for the reconstitution of Russia’s sphere of influence nor the abandonment of Ukraine and our other NATO allies and partners in Central and Eastern Europe,” he continued.
The legislation, which is not likely to become law, comes as Russia has amassed more than 100,000 troops near its border with Ukraine — sparking fears among the US and European allies that Moscow may be plotting an invasion like when it annexed the Crimean Peninsula in 2014.
Moscow has denied such accusations and is demanding among other things that the U.S. and NATO deny Ukraine membership and roll back military deployments.
On Monday, after eight hours of talks in the context of a Strategic Security Dialogue, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman told reporters that the U.S. and Russia have a “better understanding” of each other’s concerns.
A meeting of the NATO-Russia Council will take place on Wednesday, followed by a meeting of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's Permanent Council on Thursday.
The legislation would provide $200 million to bolster Ukraine’s air defense and naval capacities to counter Russian aggression. The U.S. provided $450 million to the country for military assistance in 2021 alone and about $2.5 billion since 2014.
Further, the legislation would impose sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline within 15 days of its enactment and allow Congress an option to veto a wider range of Russian-related sanctions, including the pipeline.
The bill also targets some of Moscow’s security demands, first by reaffirming reaffirms NATO’s 2008 declaration supporting Ukraine and Georgia becoming members of the alliance. It also rejects Russia’s proposal for neither side to launch intermediate-range ground-launched missiles in Europe.
McCaul was joined by House Republican Conference Chair Rep. Elise StefanikElise Marie StefanikSupreme Court declines GOP challenge against House proxy voting Mask rules spark political games and a nasty environment in the House House GOP leaders vow to end proxy voting despite widespread Republican use MORE (R-N.Y.), House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Mike RogersMichael (Mike) Dennis RogersWashington's playing with a weak hand in the Ukraine crisis House GOP members introduce legislation targeting Russia over Ukraine Corporations seek to rebuild bridges with GOP objectors ahead of midterms MORE (R-Ala.), and House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Mike TurnerMichael Ray TurnerHouse GOP members introduce legislation targeting Russia over Ukraine Nunes formally resigns from Congress Sunday shows preview: Omicron surge continues; anniversary of Jan. 6 attack approaches MORE (R-Ohio).
They are joined by Reps. Rep. Rob WittmanRobert (Rob) Joseph WittmanHouse GOP members introduce legislation targeting Russia over Ukraine 'Trump in heels' Amanda Chase discontinues congressional run after redistricting Proposed Virginia maps put rising-star House Democrats at risk MORE (R-Va.), Rep. Adam KinzingerAdam Daniel KinzingerCheney hits Gingrich for saying Jan. 6 panel members may be jailed Jan. 6 committee subpoenas leaders of 'America First' movement Kinzinger welcomes baby boy MORE (R-Ill.), Rep. Ann WagnerAnn Louise WagnerHouse GOP members introduce legislation targeting Russia over Ukraine Consumer bureau chief bashes FTC and pledges focus on tech giants, big firms House Democrats scramble to save housing as Biden eyes cuts MORE (R-Mo), Rep. Brian FitzpatrickBrian K. FitzpatrickOn The Money — Support for new COVID-19 relief grows House lawmakers urge Pelosi to bring stock trading ban to the floor Redistricting reform key to achieving the bipartisanship Americans claim to want MORE (R-Wisc.), Rep. Michael WaltzMichael WaltzDefense & National Security — Pentagon puts 8,500 troops on high alert House GOP members introduce legislation targeting Russia over Ukraine Photos of the Year MORE (R-Fla.) and Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.).