Washington, D.C. – House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) held a press conference today calling on House Democrats to address the crisis in Afghanistan and provide oversight of the president’s disastrous actions that have caused dangerous conditions on the ground and run the risk of leaving Americans behind in a Taliban stronghold.
“To watch the president have a press conference and walk away afterwards and 30 minutes later have a conference call with the Secretary of Defense, Secretary of State, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff where they contradict what the president just told us– why wouldn’t we spend our time on that while we’re in Congress?” asked McCarthy. “If I was a Democrat, I’d stop playing politics and focus on the American people.”
Remarks as prepared are below, or you can watch online here.
“Less than 24 hours ago, President Biden made the decision to not shift the August 31st deadline to withdraw our troops from Afghanistan.
“With that announcement, the message he sent around the world is that under his leadership, the United States now caves to the demands of terrorists…
“And with the very real prospect of thousands of Americans still stranded in Afghanistan on September 1st, the Biden administration is willing to accept the fact they will be leaving Americans behind in a Taliban-stronghold.
“This President’s misguided decisions run the risk of creating the largest international hostage situation we have ever had to face.
“Yesterday, President Biden had an opportunity to address the public and answer questions about his ongoing crisis in Afghanistan and the decisions he is making.
“Instead, he touted the Democrats’ $5 trillion liberal wishlist that will worsen inflation and transform our country in the worst way possible.
“Then he delivered a few minutes’ worth of remarks on evacuation efforts – but did not say how many Americans are still stranded;
“The most embarrassing part though is that he refused to take questions, and turned his back to walk away – an image that has come to define his presidency.
“He has turned his back on our own citizens stranded in Afghanistan.
“He has turned his back on our allies and partners.
“He has turned his back on his duties as Commander-in-Chief.
“And we have a Democratic majority who is following the same pattern.
“Speaker Pelosi called an ’emergency session’ this week. Not to try to get accountability for how many Americans we still have left in Afghanistan. Not to help figure out how to get our own citizens home. Not to help our partners and allies, but to pass a $5 trillion liberal wish list.
“I can’t imagine the emotional pain they are going through right now. Questioning whether their service was worth it.
“I want to speak directly to them and say this: your sacrifice was not in vain. You did everything your country asked of you and you should be proud that you helped take the fight to the enemy and prevented major terrorist attacks from happening on our soil.
“For those veterans who understandably need some extra support during this time, know that you are not alone.
“Please do not hesitate to reach out for help. Contact for the Veterans Crisis Line: call 1-800-273-8255 or text 838-255, and the website is: VeteransCrisisLine.net
“We are grateful for your service, and will never forget the sacrifices each of you made on behalf of our nation.
“You deserve leaders in government who will stop the situation in Afghanistan from spiraling further into chaos, and that is what House Republicans will remain focused on.”