WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on reports that the Biden Administration has decided to maintain long-standing U.S. nuclear declaratory policy:
“Our allies made clear to me that they strongly preferred not making any changes to U.S. policy regarding the use of nuclear weapons. While President Biden has apparently rejected the most radical changes to that policy, he should not have wasted the last year scaring allies and partners and distracting from other important issues, especially in the wake of Russian aggression and nuclear threats. Now is not the time to create doubts in the minds of our allies or our adversaries, nor is it the time for any cuts to our deterrent.
“As Putin explicitly threatens the use of nuclear weapons, China expands and improves its nuclear arsenal, and North Korea tests intercontinental ballistic missiles, it is more critical than ever that the president accelerate programs to modernize U.S. nuclear deterrence. This includes a full nuclear triad, improved non-strategic nuclear capabilities, a robust command and control system, and a recapitalized nuclear weapons complex. I look forward to working with the administration to ensure these needs are met.”