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CLAIM: House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) claimed on Friday that America is at war with Russia and therefore needs to “produce energy.”
VERDICT: False. Congress has not declared war against Russia, nor has President Joe Biden engaged combat troops with Russia.
Hoyer took to the House floor, disputing the Republican claim that the Biden administration has “clamped down” on domestic energy production.
“The Biden administration approved more drilling permits in 2021 than the Trump administration approved in the first three years they were in office. I don’t know how the [Republican leader] rationalizes his comments about the Biden constricting petroleum production,” Hoyer said. The Democrat House leader then said that America is at war with Russia.
“It is unfortunate that in a time of war, that we spend all the time blaming our own president,” Hoyer said. “It is unfortunate that when the Europeans put themselves over the objections of numerous administrations in a place where they had a dependence on Russia, Russia has no leverage over us.”
“I wish we’d get off this and really focus on the enemy. I know there’s a lot of politics here, but we’re at war. We need to produce energy,” the Maryland lawmaker said.
Despite Hoyer’s rhetoric, Congress has not declared war against Russia, nor has it passed a resolution for the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) to allow for engagement with Russia.
Instead of declaring war on Russia, Congress has been working on a $40 billion aid package to Ukraine.
In fact, an AUMF proposed by Never Trumper Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) has received zero cosponsors in Congress.
Kinzinger’s AUMF resolution would give President Joe Biden the authority to wage war with Russia if he has determined Russia used chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons in Ukraine.
“I’m introducing this AUMF as a clear red line so the Administration can take appropriate action should Russia use chemical, biological, and/or nuclear weapons,” Kinzinger said in a statement in early May. So far, the bill has no cosponsors.
Biden has also rejected calls for a no-fly zone and has consistently said he would not send troops to Ukraine to fight Russia directly.