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Sen. Johnson Presses Secretary Blinken on Biden Foreign Policy Weaknesses June 8, 2021
WASHINGTON – On Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, questioned Secretary of State Antony Blinken on the Biden administration’s weak foreign policy decisions, including waiving sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, appeasing Iran by negotiating to re-enter the JCPOA, and the administration’s policies that have created a humanitarian crisis at our southwestern border.

The full exchange can be found here, https://youtu.be/NVWK8MfrwP8 and excerpts are below. 

Senator Johnson asks:
“When you came before this committee about five months ago, I thought you were completely on board with the continued halting of the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. I have to admit I’m shocked at the fact that yesterday and today you were conceding the fact that it’s going to get built. That would have been really nice to know five months ago. When did your thinking change on that?”

Secretary Blinken responds:
“Thank you, Senator. Again as we discussed then, unfortunately construction started on this bad idea in 2018 and when we last spoke, the pipeline was well over 90% complete, as a physical…”

Senator Johnson asks:
“Yes, and it was quite complete when we imposed sanctions and halted it last time. Why not continue the sanctions? I’m sorry; your explanation literally makes no sense. So now we are conceding the building, we are going to have it constructed, now we are going to somehow impose what? Serious consequences when Germany doesn’t live up to providing the revenue relief for Ukraine, for when Russia does use it as a weapon?”

Secretary Blinken responds:
“As a practical matter as we looked at this, we all agreed that this pipeline is a bad idea. We oppose it, the president has been clear about that for a long time, but as a very practical matter of inheriting a pipeline that was 95% complete, none of the…”

Senator Johnson:
“We stopped it the last time.”

Senator Johnson asks:
“During the debate over the JCPOA, I offered an amendment to deem that a treaty. From my standpoint, that amendment should have passed 100 to 0. And had it passed 100 to 0, the JCPOA would have been, first, a far better agreement and you wouldn’t be in a position where from one administration to the next, a president can just cancel another executive agreement. Now you’re engaged in further discussions with Iran. I have my doubts that you’ll end up with a better agreement. It’s going to be worse. It will embolden Iran.”

Sen. Johnson concludes:
“The border crisis, which is the current crisis, is completely the result of the actions President Biden took when he first entered office — ending the successful migrant protection policy, the agreements with those countries, and, quite honestly, not completing the 250 miles of border wall that is bought and paid for. So I listen to Vice President Harris talking about how we’re going to secure the border: I see no evidence of that. … Please explain how these policies are going to result in anything, and how that money is not going to be completely wasted in Central America.
”  ### https://www.ronjohnson.senate.gov/2021/6/sen-johnson-presses-secretary-blinken-on-biden-foreign-policy-weaknesses