Congressman Jeff Van Drew issued a statement calling for President Biden, Vice-President Harris, and Speaker Pelosi to resign following the fall of Afghanistan. Van Drew is a former Democrat who switched parties in 2018.
Rep. Van Drew’s official statement reads, “President Biden’s decision to simply hand Afghanistan back to the Taliban after almost twenty years to the day since the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, will go down as one of the most shocking and embarrassing failures of leadership in American history.”
Van Drew said on Fox News’ Sunday Night in America that, “My God, it is one of the darkest, most embarrassing days we’ve had in our country, and it’s a tremendous embarrassment for the Biden administration. But with this administration, it is failure after failure after failure. Honest to God, I cannot believe I’m saying this, it literally is time for this president to resign. It is time for this vice president to resign. It is time for the Senate president and speaker to resign. We need new people, even new Democrats, hopefully that are moderates. We can’t keep doing this.”
Former state department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in the same interview that the withdrawal of troops was a good decision, but the timing and planning were not. Ortagus said, “It looks chaotic, it looks mismanaged, and the thing that’s concerning to me is that this administration looks caught by surprise.”
While none of the lawmakers representing Minnesota and Minnesotans in Washington, D.C. responded to inquiries sent to them from The Minnesota Sun asking them if they agreed with their former Democrat, now Republican, colleague, many shared their thoughts about the collapse of Afghanistan following the rapid withdrawal of the remaining US forces there.
“Enough of the juvenile finger pointing,” Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN-03) (pictured above) wrote in a tweet Monday morning. “Our outstanding military can defend, protect, and keep the peace, but democracies can only be built from the inside.”
Enough of the juvenile finger pointing. Afghanistan isn’t a Democratic failure or Republican failure. It represents a collective failure of American strategy. Our outstanding military can defend, protect, and keep the peace, but democracies can only be built from the inside.
— Rep. Dean Phillips 🇺🇸 (@RepDeanPhillips) August 16, 2021
Stopping short of calling for the President’s resignation, Minnesota Congressman Tom Emmer denounced President Biden and the way he withdrew American troops from Afghanistan. Emmer said that “the Administration set no concrete plan of action, and our allies were abandoned. This is a tragedy, and President Biden must answer for it.”
Last month, I sent a letter to President Biden urging him to safely evacuate our Afghan partners who assisted our Armed Forces. Instead, the Administration set no concrete plan of action, and our allies were abandoned. This is a tragedy, and President Biden must answer for it. pic.twitter.com/yp7Z8hB11S
— Tom Emmer (@RepTomEmmer) August 16, 2021
Another congressman from Minnesota, Rep. Jim Hagedorn, called the fall of Afghanistan a “complete failure of leadership,” and tweeted out that, “This president has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy decision over the past half century. The American people deserve answers from him on the crisis and how his administration intends to proceed.”
This president has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy decision over the past half century. The American people deserve answers from him on the crisis and how his administration intends to proceed. https://t.co/im5cdhjBmH
— Congressman Jim Hagedorn (@RepHagedorn) August 16, 2021
Congresswoman Ilhan Omar called the situation the result of “repeated failures of Afghanistan policy” and said that the thing to focus on now is evacuating the Afghan citizens who are fleeing for their lives. Omar said that for the last 20 years, American has “made promises we couldn’t keep.” In a tweet from 2019, Omar said “The U.S. has spent at least $760 billion in Afghanistan. We must end this expensive conflict and its casualties.”
There will be plenty of time for confronting the repeated failures of Afghanistan policy over the course of 4 presidencies. The urgency of the moment now demands we marshal an international coalition to evacuate every Afghan citizen who is fleeing for their lives. My statement: pic.twitter.com/rFJFbhxg3h
— Rep. Ilhan Omar (@Ilhan) August 16, 2021
Congressman Pete Stauber called the situation “absolutely devastating.”
(1/2) The situation unfolding in Afghanistan is absolutely devastating and my heart breaks for the civilians, particularly the women and girls, who will undoubtedly face brutal oppression and abuse under the Taliban regime.
— Pete Stauber (@RepPeteStauber) August 16, 2021
Congresswoman Betty McCollum had similar things to say, tweeting that the fall of Afghanistan is “a human disaster for the Afghan people and the culmination of a two-decade bipartisan political and strategic failure of American leadership.” In her official statement, McCollum said, “Rather than blame, the Biden administration, Congress, and future American leaders – Democrats and Republicans – need to learn some very hard lessons and make sure such a devastating foreign policy failure never happens again.” McCollum spoke out against sending more troops to Afghanistan in 2017, saying, “Afghans must take responsibility for their security.”
With the Taliban’s capture of Kabul, we are witnessing a human disaster for the Afghan people and the culmination of a two-decade bipartisan political and strategic failure of American leadership.
My full statement on the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan: https://t.co/bWqsLrkNcS
— Rep. Betty McCollum (@BettyMcCollum04) August 15, 2021
Congresswoman Michelle Fischbach did not respond to The Minnesota Sun’s request for comment, asking about her stance on Congressman Van Drew’s call for the resignation of the Biden administration and, as of Monday afternoon, her office did not have an official statement regarding the situation in Afghanistan.
Congresswoman Angie Craig said that she believes “the United States must prioritize enabling the safe departure of all U.S. and allied personnel” from Afghanistan. Craig said that she is “committed to doing everything we can to support the people of Afghanistan.”
I am heartbroken by the images coming out of Afghanistan. Right now, I believe that the United States must prioritize enabling the safe departure of all U.S. and allied personnel – and my top priority is providing whatever support is necessary to achieve that goal.
— Angie Craig (@RepAngieCraig) August 16, 2021
Senator Tina Smith said in a statement on Twitter that, “Right now, our focus must be on evacuating Americans, coalition partners, and refugees from Afghanistan.” Senator Amy Klobuchar echoed those sentiments in a similar tweet stating, “Our immediate priority must be ensuring we are doing everything possible to evacuate American citizens and our Afghan allies.”
I have been briefed on the horrific situation in Afghanistan. Our immediate priority must be ensuring we are doing everything possible to evacuate American citizens and our Afghan allies.
— Amy Klobuchar (@amyklobuchar) August 16, 2021
Right now, our focus must be on evacuating Americans, coalition partners, and refugees from Afghanistan. Their lives are at risk because of their support of our mission, and we must do everything we can to ensure their safe evacuation.
— Senator Tina Smith (@SenTinaSmith) August 16, 2021
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Hayley Tschetter is a reporter with The Minnesota Sun | Star News Network. Follow Hayley on Twitter or like her Facebook page. Send news tips to [email protected].
Photo “Rep Dean Phillips” by Rep. Dean Phillips.