U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Saks) urged the Biden administration to deploy “additional nuclear forces” and speed up innovations in the country’s nuclear technologies only days after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced his country’s withdrawal from its nuclear treaty with the United States.

Putin pulled out of the New START Treaty on Tuesday. It was an agreement between the United States and Russia that placed limits on deployed intercontinental-range nuclear weapons. Officials from the two countries agreed to terms in 2010.

Rogers, the chair of the House Armed Services Committee, said in a press release that Putin’s decision was not a surprise to him and that it was not clear whether or not Russia had already broken the treaty’s limitations on nuclear warheads.

He also suggested that President Joe Biden should direct the Joint Staff and U.S. Strategic Command to “accelerate planning in the event Russia breaches New START caps” and detract from plans “to weaken our deterrent such as canceling the Nuclear Sea Launched Cruise Missile.”

According to reports, the Biden administration decided not to develop a new nuclear-armed sea-launched cruise missile last year. Navy budget documents dubbed the program “cost prohibitive” and claimed that the weapons wouldn’t have been delivered in time. Nevertheless, the fiscal year (FY) 2023 defense authorization and appropriations bills included $45 million for the weapon and its associated warhead. 

“All options must be on the table, including deploying additional nuclear forces and increasing the readiness of our nuclear triad,” Rogers said.

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