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House Republican says Congress doesn’t need to pass ‘Democrat bills’ that help Ukraine

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Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) on Sunday said Congress does not need to pass “Democrat bills” with big price tags to help Ukraine, saying the incoming Republican majority in the House will spend less money to fund Kyiv’s war against Russia.

Turner told ABC’s “This Week” co-anchor Martha Raddatz that he personally told Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky he will have bipartisan support in the next Congress.

But Turner also said Republicans will closely look at how much is being spent.

“We don’t need to pass $40 billion, large Democrat bills … to send $8 billion dollars to Ukraine,” Turner said. “It’s been very frustrating, obviously, even to the Ukrainians, when they hear these large numbers in the United States as the result of the burgeoned Democrat bills.”

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Republicans captured control of the House in the midterm elections and will hold a slim majority in the lower chamber when the next Congress forms in January.

Because the Senate will remain in Democrats’ hands, both parties will have to work with each other to keep funding Ukraine, which is preparing for a new phase in the war over the winter months.

Republicans have scrutinized the billions of dollars Democrats have passed for Ukraine this year, saying some of the money is unrelated spending.

Earlier this month, the Biden administration asked Congress for an additional $37 billion, which President Biden is hoping that lawmakers can pass in the lame-duck session before January so Ukraine has guaranteed funding for the next few months.

Turner on Sunday said Republicans will make sure that Ukraine “gets what they need,” including critical weapons like air defenses after Russia has pounded the country with a wave of missile strikes.

“We need to make certain we work with partners and pull together an air defense system … to defend Kyiv, to defend their infrastructure,” he said.

Updated at 10:04 a.m.