America’s involvement in Ukraine presents a clarifying contrast for the 2022 elections.
The old guard, establishment GOP supports plunging America deeply into a regional conflict in Eurasia. Interventionists like Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Graham, and Kevin McCarthy lock arms with radical Democrats to fund an escalation of a war for the eastern border of Ukraine. Meanwhile, America’s own border has been vaporized. Literally millions of unvetted illegals stream into the United States, welcomed in by our political elites.
Ukraine, in fact, proved pivotal in the come-from-behind victory of JD Vance in the Ohio GOP primary for the US Senate. Powerful globalist forces poured massive resources into advertising against Vance. Ukraine became the starkest policy difference of that tough primary race, with Vance insisting that America work to de-escalate the crisis. He also boldly asserted that the war there, while tragic, involves no strategic US national interest. Vance himself was deployed to Iraq as a US Marine and knows well the realities of unnecessary war. Though the corporate media and establishment GOP howled at Vance’s America First foreign policy of realism and restraint, the voters of Ohio rallied to this agenda.
Upcoming races could unfold similarly.
At the voter level, the GOP has been transformed into a pro-worker, populist nationalist party. But at the officeholder and donor level, the battle rages on between the throwback Bush-style globalists and the Trumpian patriotic populists.
Like Vance, two other military veterans, America First candidates – Jake Bequette and Joe Kent — make Ukraine de-escalation an important pillar of their outsider, renegade campaigns.
The Natural State.
In Arkansas, Jake Bequette takes on career politician, incumbent Senator John Boozman.
After more than two decades in Congress, Boozman remains an unremarkable and dependably establishment figure who poorly represents his deeply red, America First home state. The Arkansas state motto is literally “Regnat Populus” or “The People Rule.”
But Boozman obediently joins D.C.’s escalation chorus, declaring “the United States must continue to provide Ukraine with… military and humanitarian assistance.” He also appears ready to approve the mammoth $40 billion aid package passed by Nancy Pelosi’s House. Only a handful of Republican senators have voiced opposition. Boozman is not one of them.
In substance and style, Bequette provides a stark contrast to backbench Boozman. Jake excelled on the gridiron as a third generation University of Arkansas Razorback football player. After his all-SEC college career, he played in the pros, earning a Super Bowl ring with the New England Patriots. After football, he volunteered for the Army and served America in the 101st Airborne, qualified as a Ranger, and was deployed to Iraq.
On Ukraine, Bequette insists on the America First approach espoused by President Trump who declared: “it doesn’t make sense that Russia and Ukraine aren’t sitting down and working out some kind of an agreement.” Pushing back against the Washington war machine, Bequette observes: “the people of Arkansas could sure use $40 billion to be better spent here at home.” He has further asserted that Ukraine “is a massive money laundering operation for the DC uniparty.”
The Evergreen State.
Like Vance and Bequette, Joe Kent in the state of Washington takes on the establishment as a bold outsider. Kent challenges incumbent Congressman Jaime Herrera Beutler, who voted to impeach Donald Trump. Herrera Beutler also voted in favor of the giant, taxpayer-funded military escalation package for Ukraine, supporting Pelosi and establishment Republicans against braver members like Jim Jordan, Jim Banks, and Marjorie Taylor Greene.
Kent stands against inserting America into this regional conflict. As much as any American, Kent understands the gravity of war. He joined the Army out of high school and fought as a Special Forces warrior in 11 total combat deployments. Tragically, his wife Shannon Kent was killed while serving in the US Navy fighting against ISIS in Syria in 2019.
Informed by his family’s sacrifices, Kent insists on prioritizing our various systemic crises here at home, and not costly globalist interventions. He posted on social media:
“40 billion to Ukraine is the same scam we saw over & over again in the last 2 decades of endless wars. The uniparty sends $ to wars to line their pockets w/ $ from defense contractors. This system is so powerful our leaders don’t care if our babies starve, war is their priority.”
The Vance playbook will work in other GOP primaries.
JD, Jake, and Joe represent exactly the kind of bold outsiders with the guts to truly defang the Washington permanent political class. America needs all three of these veteran warriors in the Congress where they will prevent sending other young Americans to unnecessary wars.