A bipartisan group of House members traveled over the weekend to Poland, where they met with Ukrainian refugees, the Polish prime minister and American troops.
The delegation, led by Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy, a vocal critic of President Biden’s handling of the war in Ukraine, huddled with Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak and US Ambassador to Poland Mark Brezinski in Warsaw, McCarthy’s office said Sunday.?
The California Republican had high praise for Poland, which has taken in the bulk of refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine. ???
“Poland has been an indispensable strategic partner by accepting millions of refugees, working closely with our military forces, and contributing fully to NATO as we all aim to restore peace and prosperity to the region?,” McCarthy said in the statement.?
“Our visit today should serve as a powerful message to Putin that we condemn his unprovoked attacks. Evil cannot win?,” he said.??
McCarthy said the group visited Poland to emphasize US support for Ukraine, which has been battling Russian troops since they invaded the country Feb. 24. ??
“The whole world is watching what’s unfolding in Ukraine,” McCarthy? said?. “We see the atrocities being committed by [Russian President] Vladimir Putin, and more importantly, we see the bravery of the Ukrainian people. We are here? — ?as representatives of the United States? — to ensure we are doing what is right to support Ukrainians as they defend themselves and their democracy.?”
The House members also met with Ukrainian refugees in ?northeast Poland, Ukrainian officials and American soldiers in the 82nd Airborne.
Rep. Mike Turner (R-?Ohio) called the meeting with refugees devastating.
“This is just heartbreaking to see the effects of people who are fleeing the war, with just the belongings that they could grab, with their young kids, perhaps just trying to seek safety?,” Turner told Fox News Digital on Sunday.?
“It becomes even that much clearer as you see the people who are fleeing war, that this is really just about one person. This is about Putin,” ?he continued.
?Turner, ?the top Republican on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, slammed the Biden administration for failing to provide Ukraine with the military equipment it needed sooner to act as a deterrent to Putin. ?
“It would have been so much more timely if Biden had responded and provided weapons to Ukraine earlier. And seeing the logistics now and knowing that it’s happening during a conflict, during war, we would have been able to get weapons in and there may have been able to actually repel the Russian invasion instead of now as they’re fighting to try to reclaim land that Russia is bombing,” Turner? told Fox?.
In McCarthy’s statement about the trip, he said Ukrainian officials insisted that while they were able to fight Russian troops, they needed better weapons to do it.
And, like Turner, McCarthy told The Post in an interview last month that Biden was too slow to respond.
?”America is not leading. Europe is leading. The weaponry?,? it?’?s too late. … [Biden] said, ‘After [the Russians] enter, I’ll do these sanctions?,’ ” he told The Post.?
” ‘?After [the Russians] enter, I will supply [Ukraine] with weapons. ‘?It’s too little too late, and people are dying because of that decision. The No. 1 thing you want to do is not to have a war. You want deterrent. You want to show them the actions prior?,” he said. ?
Accompanying McCarthy, along with Turner, are Reps. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Michael McCaul of Texas, ?Ken Calvert of California, French Hill of Arkansas, Mike Garcia of California, Michelle Fischbach of Minnesota, and Kathleen Rice, a Democrat from New York and Stephanie Murphy, a Democrat from Florida.