Rep. Palmer to Newsmax: House GOP Will Line Up for Bill on Afghanistan A Taliban fighter walks in front of people sitting along a road outside a bank waiting to withdraw money at Shar-e-Naw neighborhood in Kabul on September 4, 2021. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP via Getty)
By Sandy Fitzgerald | Saturday, 04 September 2021 12:20 PM
House Republicans will be lined "out the door" to sign a discharge petition to bring a bill to the floor in hopes of forcing accountability from the Biden administration over its handling of the end of the war in Afghanistan, as Congress must focus on bringing Americans out of the country and into safety, Rep. Gary Palmer said on Newsmax Saturday.
"We need six Democrats to sign with us in order to bring that bill to the floor, so it's going to be interesting to see how many Democrats are gonna put the lives of American citizens and our allies, behind their politics," said the Alabama Republican, appearing with Rep. Pat Fallon, R-Texas on Newsmax's "Saturday Report."
Earlier this week, Republicans sought consent for a vote on the bill demanding that the administration detail a plan for pulling remaining Americans out of Afghanistan, removing military equipment, and for not recognizing the Taliban as the country's government, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrats refused a vote on the bill.
"Before we start having hearings. I think we need to come together as a Congress to do all that we can to get American citizens and our allies out of Afghanistan," said Palmer.
"We need an accurate count from the Biden administration and we're not getting that…this is a bipartisan effort to try to get people out. I think there will be time for hearings a little bit later. But right now, there are people getting killed, being hunted down and killed in Afghanistan and we need to get these people out."
Fallon, however, called for "immediate hearings, as the Biden administration has "been so nonresponsive to members of Congress."
"We're co-equal branches of government, not only for Republican members but Democrat members, and we should have immediate hearings," said Fallon, adding that committees of jurisdiction, such as Oversight and Armed Services, and those of Foreign Affairs, Veterans Affairs, and Homeland Security "should have meetings forthwith."
He noted that 40 members from the GOP caucus went back with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to demand action, including on the bill to force information and a plan from the Biden administration.
"We don't want any money to go to the Taliban," Fallon said. "We don't want them to be recognized, and also, we want a detailed accounting of the $85 billion worth of equipment that was left there, that the American people have paid for that now [will be] certainly used to harm the innocent and maybe even Americans."
Fallon, though, said he got "gaveled down" on the bill and "we weren't even able to read the names of the 13 fallen" soldiers killed by a terrorist bombing at the Kabul airport.
"That's disgusting," he added.
Palmer, meanwhile, called it "disturbing" that President Joe Biden has called the end of the war and the evacuation an "extraordinary success."
"He did it at a time when American flags all over the country were flying at half staff," said Palmer. "I just want to remind people, we don't fly our flag at half staff to celebrate an extraordinary accomplishment. We were flying at half staff to mourn an extraordinary tragedy."