Casper Republican and former state lawmaker Tim Stubson has released a video on social media on behalf of Republicans for Ukraine, explaining why Americans should continue to send money to the Eastern European country in its war with Russia.
“If you have a united front and let Russia know that America’s in it for the long term, you make it much more likely the war ends sooner rather than later,” Stubson told Cowboy State Daily on Monday.
Republicans for Ukraine is a project spawned by the conservative nonprofit Defending Democracy Together.
Stubson believes America should show Russian President Vladimir Putin that it will financially support Ukraine “for the long haul” and through the end of their war.
Getting Ahead Of A Problem
He said a century’s worth of historical precedent shows the U.S. benefits from a peaceful and prosperous Europe. Both World Wars I and II sprung from European entanglements that escalated.
If Russia wins its war with Ukraine, Stubson said “sooner is always cheaper than later,” and it’s only a matter of time before it starts encroaching on North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries. Based on its agreements with NATO, the U.S. is required to take military action to defend any NATO member from foreign aggression.
“The only language that Putin and the Russian regime understand is force,” Stubson said. “It’s important for us to meet them now when it’s, frankly, Ukrainians that are meeting the brunt of the burden.”
He also believes it’s America’s role to support other democracies around the world. Now more than ever, Stubson believes it’s critical to show the rest of the world that the U.S. will fight for these principles.
“The Ukrainians have shown their willingness to spend their own blood, sweat, treasure in defense of those principles and we should support them in that,” he said.
VOA News reported last week that Republicans for Ukraine will spend $2 million in an upcoming advertising campaign aimed at building back Republican lawmakers' support for Ukraine. The campaign will air during Wednesday’s Republican presidential primary debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and is intended to shore up GOP support for Ukraine prior to the 2024 election.
“If you get a Republican candidate in there that’s openly advocating stepping away from Ukraine, you give Russia an incentive to keep holding on through the election,” Stubson said.
Republicans for Ukraine has warned that former President Donald Trump’s “America First” policies have eroded what it says are traditional Republican values.
Stubson agrees, and said he doesn’t want to see Trump win the Republican nomination for president in 2024. He’s also been involved with Republicans for the Rule of Law, another Defending Democracy Together group that opposes Trump’s efforts to challenge the results of the 2020 election.
Numerous polls indicate Americans’ support for continuing to fund Ukraine’s war effort is waning.
A recent CNN poll shows that 55% of respondents say U.S. Congress should not authorize additional money to support Ukraine, including 71% of Republicans. More than half say that the U.S. has already done enough to help Ukraine, including 59% of Republicans.
This sharply contrasts with a poll conducted in the first days of the Russian invasion in early 2022, which found 62% of Americans felt the U.S. should have been doing more.
Since the invasion began, President Joe Biden’s administration has committed $43 billion in U.S. security aid for Ukraine. Earlier this month, the White House requested $24 billion in supplemental funding for Ukraine from Congress.
“It’s critical to the Ukraine’s success,” Stubson said. “If the U.S. were to step away, it makes the challenges much more significant for Ukraine.”
Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyoming, said Biden’s funding request should be scrutinized in a recent interview with Fox Digital.
“While the Biden administration has ignored the security and humanitarian disaster happening at the border, their appetite to spend billions on other priorities has no end,” he said.
Many Wyoming Republicans, like U.S. Rep. Harriet Hageman, have publicly expressed support for Ukraine from a philosophical standpoint, but oppose giving any more money.
“I’m sympathetic to the Ukraine situation,” Hageman said during a June town hall in Saratoga. “But I have to wonder with the payments that have come out of the Ukraine, to the Biden family, what is some of the back stories there?”
Barrasso has generally supported American aid being offered to Ukraine, but recently told Fox Digital that NATO members must be held accountable for providing money to the country and that “the United States has doubled what other NATO countries have contributed to Ukraine — combined.”
“The U.S. will not shoulder this alone,” he said.
But during a July Fox News interview, Barrasso also said the U.S. should continue supporting Ukraine militarily and accused the Biden administration of taking too long with these efforts, which he said has prolonged the war and increased deaths resulting from the conflict.
Sen. Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyoming, has had a stance more similar to Hageman, saying in late 2022 that any support given to Ukraine should come from the International Monetary Fund Special Drawing Rights and “not from hardworking American families.”
A month prior, she andthree dozen other Republican senators and members of the U.S. House, including Hageman, sent a letter to Shalanda Young, director of the Office of Management and Budget, demanding a full accounting of the U.S. funding sent to Ukraine.
Leo Wolfson can be reached at Leo@CowboyStateDaily.com.