Mike Johnson, speaker of the US House of Representatives, said he would move forward with the Ukraine bill – now separate from other foreign aid – amid threats from hardline Republicans such as Marjorie Taylor Greene to oust him because of the bill’s support for Ukraine.

Following the latest development, the foreign aid would be broken down into four separate bills for Israel, Ukraine, the Indo-Pacific region, and a separate package for national security measures respectively.

Johnson’s challenge to Greene comes on the heels of a meeting Friday, April 12 with Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican candidate. Trump backed Johnson, saying: “He is doing a very good job. And I’m sure that Marjorie [Taylor Greene] understands that. She’s a very good friend of mine. And I know she has a lot of respect for the speaker.”

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In the wake of Trump’s support and despite criticism from Ukraine supporters that the delay in the House was a ploy to prevent giving President Joe Biden anything that could be construed as a victory, Johnson emphasized he was “doing the right thing” even if that would cost him his job.

“Listen, my philosophy is you do the right thing and you let the chips fall where they may… If I operated out of fear over a motion to vacate, I would never be able to do my job.

“Look, history judges us for what we do. This is a critical time right now… I can make a selfish decision and do something that’s different. But I’m doing here what I believe to be the right thing.

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Kallas said that training Ukraine’s forces on their territory would not be escalatory, adding that “Russia’s propaganda is about being at war with NATO; they don’t need an excuse.”

“I think providing critical aid to Ukraine right now is critically important,” said Johnson at a news conference, adding that he “[believes] Vladimir Putin is an evil regime” and that Putin’s ambition goes beyond Ukraine.

“Vladimir Putin would continue to march through Europe if he were allowed. I think he might go to the Balkans [sic] next, I think he might have a showdown with Poland or one of our NATO allies.

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“To put it bluntly, I’d rather send bullets to Ukraine than American boys,” said Johnson, adding that his own son would start attending the Naval Academy this year, and the current development is “a live fire exercise” for him “as it is so many American families.”

According to Johnson, the new amendments to the Ukraine bill would entail more accountability where the government has to provide “within 45 days” a solid plan and strategy on achieving the goals.

Under the new bill, fundings to the Ukrainian government would also be in the form of a loan, where a clause stated that it could potentially be “forgiven” by the US president in 2026.

As for frozen Russian assets, Johnson said the new Rebuilding Economic Prosperity and Opportunity for Ukrainians Act (REPO Act) would fall under another bill concerning national securities, where “corrupt Russian oligarch’s assets” could be used to “fund the resistance in Ukraine.”

“Using corrupt Russian oligarchs assets to fund the resistance of the Ukrainians is pure poetry in my view,” said Johnson. 

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The US aid package for Ukraine has been stalled in Congress for months due to a split within the Republican Party over Ukraine aid, where some hardline Republicans have opposed the bill and threatened to oust Johnson should he decide to move forward with it.

Johnson’s comments came amid an acute weapon and ammunition shortage suffered by Kyiv at present, where Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky publicly stated that there are “zero missiles left” for air defense, which has enabled Moscow to seize the opportunity and wage a new offensive on Ukrainian positions.

“The current ratio of artillery shells stands at 1 to 10. Can we endure for much longer? No,” Zelensky said.

Due to the shortage, Moscow has also been able to wipe out almost all of Ukraine’s thermal power generation and all critical energy infrastructure in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city bordering Russia.

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