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House of Representatives Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) speaks to reporters during a weekly press conference at Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on April 16, 2024.

REUTERS/Michael A. McCoy/File Photo

The toughest job in America?

It’s a bit surprising that anyone wants to be Speaker of the US House of Representatives. Six months ago, Speaker Kevin McCarthy was ousted by fellow Republicans after he dared to cooperate with House Democrats on funding the government. His replacement, Mike Johnson, now faces a battle to retain the gavel as he attempts to navigate between Democrats and an increasingly fractured GOP with rabble-rousers like Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene raising objections to foreign aid and threatening the Speaker’s job.

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U.S. Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-LA) makes a statement to members of the news media in Washington, U.S., February 27, 2024.

REUTERS/Leah Millis

Split the difference: Johnson to push separate bills for Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan

For months, we’ve all wondered how US House Speaker Mike Johson was going to square this circle: The Biden administration, most Democrats, and much of the GOP establishment want more aid for Israel and Ukraine, while hardliners in Johnson’s own Republican Party, led by Georgia congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, say foreign wars aren’t America’s business and that border security is more important.

Now we know. The Louisiana Republican plans to break that unsquarable circle into a handful of little strips (this metaphor ends here, we promise) – crafting country-specific aid bills for Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan.

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Jess Frampton

Smooth sailing for LNG amid Biden’s pause, Trudeau’s hesitation, and Johnson’s political gamble?

If you thought America’s liquefied natural gas policy had nothing to do with Russia’s war in Ukraine, think again. LNG is all over the news right now, thanks to House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) cooking up a plan to link the issues.

Meanwhile, north of the border, Canada is having its own LNG squabbles as the future of the multibillion-dollar industry is being debated. Tensions between the federal government, which is increasingly weary of fossil fuel mega-projects, and provincial governments keen on resource revenue, are shaping the debate.

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Israel's global image wanes further after killing of aid workers
Israel's global image wanes after killing of aid workers | Ian Bremmer | World In :60

Israel's global image wanes further after killing of aid workers

Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on World In :60.

Is Netanyahu losing the PR battle amid public outrage over the IDF strike killing seven aid workers?

I think Israel is losing the information war around the world, not just with the Global South, which was certainly true a few months ago, but increasingly even with Israel's closest allies. I'm hearing from the Germans, from the French, you know, from the Canadians, from the United States, that there is really a lot of upset with the unwillingness to take far greater care about civilian casualties while the Israelis are engaging in massive airstrikes still across Gaza. And of course, especially if we see strikes into Rafah, where well over a million Palestinians are trying to shelter. It's a big problem for the Israelis. It's a big problem for Netanyahu, but no end in sight, right now. And the potential for the war to escalate continues to be very, very real.

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House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) speaking at a press conference at the U.S. Capitol.

Is Ukraine funding on the House’s horizon?

After stalling a vote for months, House Speaker Mike Johnson hinted Sunday that he may introduce a new Ukraine aid package when Congress returns next week.

The new package would be structured as a loan rather than a grant, an idea former President Donald Trump has supported in the past. Johnson needs Trump’s approval to keep the MAGA contingency of the House on board.

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Impact of Russian missile strike on Shevchenkivskyi district of Kyiv

Ruslan Kaniuka via Reuters Connect

Under Fire and Underfunded: Russian missiles rain on Kyiv, US aid trapped in Congress

On Thursday, Kyiv experienced its largest missile attack in weeks. The Ukrainian Air Force successfully shot down all 31 missiles, but falling debris still injured 17 individuals and damaged schools, homes, and infrastructure.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with winners of the Leaders of Russia national management competition at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia March 12, 2024.

Sputnik/Sergei Savostyanov/Pool via REUTERS

​Despite Putin’s current swagger, Russia remains vulnerable

After last year’s failed Ukrainian counteroffensive, Russia’s Vladimir Putin has signaled confidence that, thanks to lagging support from the West and Ukraine’s shortage of troops and weapons, Russia can win a war of attrition. But a series of stories today remind us the Kremlin still has plenty of security concerns.

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FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump greets Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S., May 13, 2019.

REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo

Pressure builds on Ukraine

The most hotly debated question about a possible second Donald Trump foreign policy: Would he simply abandon Ukraine and its fight to repel Russian invaders? We might now have an answer.

Hungary’s PM Viktor Orbán, a political ally of both Trump and Russia’s Vladimir Putin, announced after meeting with Trump in Florida yesterday that the former president “will not give a penny in the Ukraine-Russia war.” He told Hungary’s M1 TV channel that “if the Americans don’t give money, the Europeans alone are unable to finance this war. And then the war is over.”

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