House Republicans critical of U.S. assistance to Ukraine during its war with Russia introduced a privileged resolution on Thursday to audit the funds allocated by Congress.
The resolution is being led by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and backed by a group of GOP lawmakers. House and Senate lawmakers from both sides of the aisle supportive of continued U.S. assistance to Ukraine say these colleagues are part of a minority fringe.
But the resolution, which calls for preserving administration documents and communications related to Ukraine funding distribution, speaks to other criticisms among some Republican lawmakers who support aid to Ukraine but say more oversight is needed.
The Biden administration has provided more than $20 billion in military assistance to Kyiv, as well as about $10 billion in humanitarian assistance and about $13 billion in economic assistance.
And President Biden has called for Congress to earmark $37.7 billion in additional funding for Ukraine.
Greene introduced the bill as a privileged resolution, meaning it will be referred to the relevant committee, where members will have 14 business days to either reject it, or approve it for a vote on the House floor.
If the bill is not brought up in the committee within that time frame, Greene has the option of forcing a House floor vote on the bill without it being referred to by a committee.
It’s not yet clear which House panel will consider the resolution, but Democrats are likely to vote it down to prevent it from going to the House floor.
Greene said she is prepared to reintroduce the resolution in the next Congress when Republicans hold the majority.
“I’ll introduce this resolution again, but I’ll also be calling for a full audit. We voted ‘no’ to send money over there, but we’re also going to audit what’s happening in Ukraine.”
Co-sponsors of the bill include GOP Reps. Matt Gaetz (Fla.), Barry Moore (Ala.), Andrew Clyde (Ga.) and Thomas Massie (Ky.). Rep-elect Cory Mills (R-Fla.) also appeared alongside the lawmakers at a Thursday press conference.
Greene referred to remarks from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) who had earlier said Republicans are not going to send a “blank check” to Ukraine, in responding to criticisms within his party over American assistance.
“You’ve heard Leader McCarthy say publicly that he doesn’t see very good odds for much funding for Ukraine going forward in a Republican-controlled conference,” Greene said.
McCarthy had later tried to clarify his comments, saying that he supported U.S. assistance to Ukraine but was in favor of more oversight.
Greene said she had informed the Republican leader that she was introducing the resolution.
“I said, ‘I’m having a press conference at 4’ and he said, ‘OK.’”