Press Release
For Immediate Release: 
July 18, 2022
Contact Info: 
Raymond Rodriguez 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the House Floor this afternoon urging support for H.Res. 1130, a bipartisan resolution that expresses support for the sovereign decision of Finland and Sweden to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization as well as calling on all members of NATO to ratify the protocols of accession swiftly. Below is a transcript of his remarks and a link to the video:
 
Click here for a link to the video.
 
“Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I thank my friend, Mr. Costa, for yielding this time. I thank my friend, the Ranking Member, Mr. Turner, for his role in bringing this to the Floor. Mr. Speaker, as has been said over and over again, Vladimir Putin made a terrible strategic and tragic miscalculation by illegally invading the sovereign and democratic nation of Ukraine. His false justification for that invasion was the supposed threat posed by NATO expansion. His other false claim [is] that Russian Ukrainians were being terrorized and threatened. Neither of those allegations were true. Now his actions have led directly, as Mr. Turner just pointed out and Mr. Costa had pointed out, the opposite of what he intended.
 
“And that is that we are going to be adding two extraordinary new members to the European community, two countries who have shared our democratic values, our ‘nation of laws’ values, our humanitarian values with us for literally over half a century. Together, Finland and Sweden will add substantial capabilities to NATO’s collective defense and make the Baltic region much more secure against Russian aggression. But much more than that, they will add value because of their values to our alliance.
 
“Mr. Speaker, I was in Denmark in April, meeting with senior officials, and I can attest that the addition of Finland and Sweden to the NATO family will create a Scandinavian bloc – Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland – within NATO that will be more than the sum of its parts significantly contributing to the peace and stability of Europe and to security of all NATO nations, including the United States.
 
“As I have said before, we must ensure that Putin’s invasion will result in a strategic defeat for Russia. I pause, Mister Speaker, to emphasize that point: Vladimir Putin must not win this war. Not only for the sake of the Ukrainians and their extraordinary bravery, and the bravery and leadership of Mr. Zelensky, their President, but because the free world needs to send a very strong and clear and unmistakable message that tyranny will not prevail. We must send a message to dictators around the world that this action is unacceptable and will be opposed to victory by the free world. We must defend the hard-won principle in international laws and norms that a nation cannot simply invade and seek to conquer territory from a neighbor by force.
 
“That was accepted for centuries, indeed millennia, but it is not acceptable today in the world of nuclear weapons, in a world that has a United Nations that stands for the principle that no nation by force can take the land of another nation.
 
“I want to thank Rep. Keating for his leadership on this resolution. Mr. Speaker, I hope we all can come together – Democrats and Republicans – in a resounding, unanimous vote to show our support not only for Ukraine, which we have demonstrated over and over again by vote of this House, but for our new NATO allies: the people of Finland and Sweden.
 
“I want to thank the Prime Minister of Sweden, Magdalena Andersson, and the Prime Minister of Finland, Sanna Marin, for their leadership in taking what is in many respects a courageous stand. The Finns of course have a very long border with Russia. They believe, correctly in my view, that their security is contingent and that is why they are joining NATO. As we have reiterated time and time again, this House is committed to honoring Article 5 of the NATO charter. Mr. Chairman, this is a good resolution that will hold us in good stead as a nation and as a global community. I yield back the balance of my time.”