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The Ukraine War Has Revealed A Fault Line Within The GOP’s Presidential Candidate Field



This week Fox News host Tucker Carlson published a series of responses from current and potential Republican presidential candidates on their positions on the war in the Ukraine. It was interesting to me first who and who didn’t respond but beyond that, what the response were and how each candidate is attempting to create a narrative that will endear them to republican primary voters.

Former President Donald Trump was resolved in his responses that had he still been the president Russia never would have invaded the Ukraine. And, while this might be true, what is more important to the primary voters I speak with is how the billions upon billions of U.S. tax dollars are being spent — mostly with a corrupt regime with no accountability.

The War in the Ukraine has revealed a fault line, a divide, a schism if you will in the current crop of both announced and soon to be announced candidates for president. Many of us remember the days of President Ronald Reagan who famously stated, “Peace through strength.”

As a matter of fact, the Reagan Library’s website says … “The foundation of Reagan’s foreign policy, known as the Reagan Doctrine, was the support of freedom for all people around the world.”

His commitment to the idea of “peace through strength” led to the modernization of our military forces. During Reagan’s administration, the size of the U.S. Army grew by two active divisions and saw the development of new weapons systems.

While “Peace through strength” is what some of the candidates who answered the Tucker Carlson survey attempt to convey, I believe the majority of Republican voters now favor an “America First” agenda. They question how much money we will continue to give — almost unabated — to the Ukraine.

For everything from funding the pension of the Ukrainian people, to providing military and humanitarian support — when does the largesse of the United States end?

Quite simply, we have enormous problems here at home. We have a deficit of almost $32 trillion. That means each taxpayer owes approximately $936,000. We have provided more funding to the Ukraine — approaching $200 Billion in direct and non-direct payments — than we have for our border crisis in the last five years.

Candidates who continue to support unlimited tax dollars to the Ukraine will do so at their own peril. Rarely are elections won based on foreign policy matters. And, it is even less likely a Republican primary will have foreign policy as it’s primary discussion point. That being said, there are significant differences between individuals positions as it relates to the role the United States should play in the Ukraine.

If you believe your tax dollars are better spent overseas, you can find a candidate to agree with you. However, if you believe that taking care of Veterans, homeless, those with mental illness, securing our borders from illegal entry and reducing our deficit so that our children and grandchildren are not burdened with massive debt are more important priorities, I encourage you to find a candidate for office that wants to put America First.

Elections are about choices. There is potentially no bigger choice for a candidate than to decide if they want to put the direct interests of the American people ahead of those overseas. You could argue — helping the people of the Ukraine puts a check on Russian President Vladimir Putin — and that may be true however, I want to help the people who live in my community, my state and my country first.

Corey Lewandowski is a former Trump 2016 campaign manager and 2020 senior adviser.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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  1. De Santis is right and this is a “territorial dispute” that was never in our national security interest. In fact, Ukraine has actually been part of Russia for most of the last 300 years and certainly until the USSR collapsed in 1991. The Democrats and Neocons say that if we don’t stop Putin now, then who will be next? As if 30 NATO nations wouldn’t be enough to stop Putin if he invaded any Western European country; the original purpose of NATO. Since when did it change to protect former parts of the USSR? And now Brandon, in the biggest foreign policy blunder of all time, has caused a firm alliance between China and Russia; the worst possible nightmare for us and the entire world. Then all our Politicians bow to the “Churchillian” Zelenskyy, who they say is a Democratic hero. The truth is that Zelenskyy is a corrupt dictator who has shut down all Ukrainian Orthodox Christian churches in the country, he is jailing priests and has shut down all opposition media. And, oh yeah, we have no idea where that 115 totally unaccountable billions that we sent is going, except that we do know that some Ukrainian oligarchs are buying mansions in Switzerland.

    And no, we have no moral obligation and simply can’t be the world’s police force, especially since we don’t even have a sovereign border or safe cities here. I would rather see us stopping the genocide of Christians being slaughtered in Nigeria (over 45,000 killed) that nobody ever talks about. This war could easily have had a peace settlement if we had agreed to let Putin keep Crimea (remember he took it in 2014 when Obama was President and nobody cared) and simply promised to stop pushing Ukraine to join NATO. Instead, we now have another never ending war that Biden has promised that we will fund “for as long as it takes” and has openly changed from protecting Ukraine to “regime change” in Russia. A not so subtle change that just may walk us into WWIII.

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