House Republicans are indicating they will be investigating the Biden administration's handling of a suspected Chinese surveillance balloon that traversed the country last week before being shot down Saturday off the coast of South Carolina.
Although no formal hearings on the balloon have been publicly announced, several prominent Republicans have indicated they will seek answers from the administration.
The Pentagon said they first detected the balloon in U.S. airspace Jan. 28 high above Alaska, north of the Aleutian Islands. President Joe Biden said he wanted the balloon to be shot down last Wednesday, but military officials advised against it fearing civilian casualties from the balloon's debris. The balloon continued a southeast track that took it past several key U.S. military installations before it was shot down.
The House Armed Services Committee scheduled a Tuesday morning hearing on "The Pressing Threat of the Chinese Communist Party to U.S. National Defense." The committee was to hear testimony from nongovernmental witnesses on the threat of the CCP to U.S. national defense.
"I remain deeply concerned by the Biden administration's decision to allow the spy balloon to traverse the United States," committee Chair Mike Rogers, R-Ala., said Saturday in a news release.
"Now, the White House must provide answers about why they decided to allow a CCP spy balloon to cross the United States and what damage to our national security occurred from this decision."
House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Mike McCaul, R-Texas, tweeted Saturday on the committee's Twitter account the Biden administration "should have taken care of this before it became a national security threat."
"I will be demanding answers and will hold the admin accountable for this embarrassing display of weakness," McCaul wrote Saturday in another tweet.
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