(DCWatchdog.com) – The Ukrainian government invited Florida Governor Ron DeSantis to visit it after the high-profile Republican said the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine was a “territorial dispute” carrying no “vital” interest to the US.
The invitation was extended to DeSantis by Oleg Nikolenko, the leading spokesman for Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The New York Post reported.
Nikolenko tagged DeSantis in a tweet, noting the Florida governor’s service in the US military and his deployment in Iraq.
“We are sure that as a former military officer deployed to a combat zone, Governor [DeSantis] knows the difference between a ‘dispute’ and war,” the Ukrainian official wrote.
“We invite him to visit Ukraine to get a deeper understanding of Russia’s full-scale invasion and the threats it poses to US interests,” Nikolenko added.
The report notes that several high-profile GOP figures have pushed back against DeSantis’s comments that a “virtual ‘blank check’ funding” to Ukraine was ignoring “our country’s most pressing challenges.”
“While the US has many vital national interests – securing our borders, addressing the crisis of readiness within our military, achieving energy security and independence, and checking the economic, cultural, and military power of the Chinese Communist Party – becoming further entangled in a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia is not one of them,” DeSantis said earlier this week, responding to a questionnaire by Fox News host Tucker Carlson Monday night.
The Florida governor’s comments seemed to echo former President Donald Trump’s stance.
“We cannot prioritize intervention in an escalating foreign war over the defense of our homeland,” Trump wrote, responding to Tucker Carlson’s questionnaire.
He argued that Russia’s attack against Ukraine was not of vital importance to America.
“It is for Europe. But not for the United States. That is why Europe should be paying far more than we are [in aid], or equal,” Trump declared.
At the same time, another Republican presidential hopeful, former US Ambassador Nikki Haley, accused DeSantis of copying the former president.
“America is far better off with a Ukrainian victory than a Russian victory,” Haley stated.
Republican US Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina also insisted that the war in Ukraine was vital to the West since, if Putin wins, “more conflict is coming.”
“When it comes to Putin, you either pay now or pay later,” Graham wrote on Twitter.
“Giving in to Putin in Ukraine, in terms of American national security interests, is Biden’s disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan on steroids,” he argued.
Another GOP US Senator, Marco Rubio of Florida, also slammed DeSantis for describing the war in Ukraine as a “territorial dispute.”
“Well, it’s not a territorial dispute in the sense that any more than it would be a territorial dispute if the United States decided that it wanted to invade Canada or take over the Bahamas,” he said.
“Just because someone claims something doesn’t mean it belongs to them,” Rubio added.
What is your opinion? Should DeSantis go visit Ukraine? Please share your thoughts and views by emailing [email protected]. Thank you.