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Chairman Risch on Biden Administration’s Extension of New START Treaty

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on the Biden Administration’s extension of the New START Treaty for five years:

“As the new administration extends New START for five years, I note its pledge to pursue future talks to address all of Russia’s nuclear weapons and China’s growing arsenal. This will be a tall order, considering Russia’s history of cheating, and China’s refusal to talk.

“We must keep the American people safe from nuclear threats by preserving our nuclear deterrent and fully funding nuclear modernization. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Deputy Secretary-nominee Kathleen Hicks have made clear they support the nuclear triad, that nuclear deterrence is the highest priority mission for the U.S. military, and that updating and overhauling the nuclear force is critical. As the Biden Administration conducts a new Nuclear Posture Review, it is critical the administration heeds their counsel.

“Finally, as we have seen, agreements made without the support of Congress do not last. Therefore, I expect the administration to work closely with Congress as these efforts progress. Any agreements it presents to Congress should protect the security of the U.S. and our allies, and be verifiable and enforceable.”