Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenksy is expected to return to Capitol Hill, United States, on Thursday, for his second visit since his country was besieged by Russia.
CNN reported that about a year ago, Zelensky faced a much different reception in Congress, where Democrats controlled the House and public support for funding the war effort in Ukraine was higher. As he stood to ask for more money and weapons before a joint meeting of Congress Zelensky was met with a packed House, members adorned in yellow and blue standing in support with Ukraine.
Now, the Ukrainian president will return to Congress to a new speaker, Kevin McCarthy – facing a rebellion on his right – who has yet to promise future aid to Ukraine and will have to balance his own political future against the future Zelensky is hoping for his country.
“Was Zelensky elected to Congress? Is he our president? I don’t think so. I have questions for where’s the accountability on the money we’ve already spent? What is this the plan for victory?” McCarthy had asked on Tuesday.
The publication also reported that, this week alone, McCarthy’s right flank has openly taunted members for backing Ukraine.
Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida posted a picture of McCarthy in a Ukraine pin and with a yellow and blue pocket square, writing, “How does this make you feel?”
GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia posted a scene of Lord Farquaad calling his troops to battle from the animated film “Shrek,” tweeting, “Washington warlords speaking to the American people about Ukraine.”
President Joe Biden is set to welcome Zelensky to the White House also on Wednesday. Biden is seeking to hear a “battlefield perspective” from Zelensky as a second autumn of war approaches, National Security Council coordinator for strategic communications, John Kirby, told reporters.