Graham accuses DeSantis of ‘taking the Chinese line’ on Ukraine in describing the war as a ‘territorial conflict’
Exclusive: senator. Lindsey Graham, RS.C. , said the Florida governor. Ron DeSantis was “taking the Chinese side” on the Russian invasion of Ukraine when that was possible Republican Party candidate 2024 The war was called a “territorial conflict”.
During an interview with Fox News Digital on Friday, the South Carolina Rep. and military veteran was asked if he was concerned about… current contestants As for the GOP presidential nomination — DeSantis, who is expected to announce a bid for the White House, and former President Donald Trump, who already has — both have a more skeptical stance on the current level of U.S. aid to Ukraine than founding members of their own party.
“Governor DeSantis, whom I respect, basically takes the Chinese position when it comes to the Russian invasion,” Graham said.
“China calls this a territorial dispute. This is not a territorial dispute. This is an invasion of a sovereign democracy by [Vladimir Putin’s] Russia is barbaric by nature.
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He added that DeSantis “has a lot to be proud of as governor,” but said, “I think any Republican who goes down Biden’s path or tries to, you know, weaken in the face of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, is inviting more aggression.”
Of Trump, who has already endorsed him for 2024, Graham said, “If he had to become president again — I really think Putin wouldn’t have invaded on his watch — but I told President Trump that if you didn’t see the relationship between China going after Taiwan, Russia going into Ukraine… You’re not watching closely.”
DeSantis said that “getting further involved in a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia” is not “vital” to US interests in a response to a questionnaire provided by Tucker Carlson. “The Biden administration’s hypothetical ‘blank-check’ funding of this conflict ‘as long as it takes’, without any specific goals or accountability, distracts from our country’s most pressing challenges,” he said.
He also accused President Joe Biden of “pushing Russia into a de facto alliance with China” and strengthening “Putin’s war machine” with his renewable energy policies. Fox News Digital has reached out to DeSantis’ office for comment.
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Beijing has not taken a public, public stance against Ukraine. But the upcoming meeting of Chinese President Xi Jinping with Russian President Vladimir Putin, amid fears that China might start arming Russia, has raised concerns within the international community.
In the US, there is a growing rift within the Republican Party between those increasingly sick of watching the federal government send billions in foreign aid, and more establishment members of the party who argue that helping Ukraine fend off an illegal Russian invasion is vital to supporting international stability.
Graham, one of the loudest voices in Congress in favor of more aid to Kiev, said the US had a duty to “shame” Xi and Putin before their next meeting.
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“China is a communist dictatorship. Putin is one of the most notorious foreign criminals of the 21st century,” Graham said. “It’s an axis of evil in its own way, when you throw Iran in there.”
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“But what I will do is just pressure China not to help Russia militarily, because that extends to war. And I will label Russia a state sponsor of terrorism — and that makes it more difficult for China to help Russia.”
Graham went further earlier in the interview, now vowing to “hold business as usual” until Russia is designated a terrorist state, in light of Putin’s recent war crimes accusations by the International Criminal Court.
“I’m going to do everything, and stop business as usual on the Senate floor, to make the point we need to designate … Russia’s state is a sponsor of terrorism under American law,” the senator said. “It would make Putin’s Russian state radiant — even more so than it is today. It would put him in the category of … Iran, Syria, North Korea.”