Rosendale accused of opposing Ukrainian aid

October 8, 2022

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US Representative Matt Rosendale drew criticism during a debate on Thursday night after suggesting Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was President Joe Biden’s fault as Rosendale defended his opposition to aid to the torn country by war.

Challengers Penny Ronning, a Democrat, and Gary Buchanan, an independent, said the incumbent Republican’s stance on the war is an embarrassment to Montana. The debate was hosted and televised by Montana PBS.

Rosendale has repeatedly voted against helping Ukrainians. The question that sparked the conversation was how much US aid was enough.

“First of all, I think it’s really important for everyone to understand that this is a tragic situation, that Russia invaded Ukraine and an unprovoked situation, and that there is, there has a lot of people who lost their lives. And there are a lot of people who have been displaced and forced to leave their country, their home. And we all feel bad for that. Unfortunately, and your number is not even There was $70 billion in aid,” Rosendale said, correcting a moderator who, counting only military aid, summed up the US cost at more than $15 billion.

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“Seventy billion dollars have already been sent to Ukraine, okay, to help in this effort. And as this happens, what we need to do is look back and see what led to this situation. And that’s where consequences come from elections, and where leaders matter,” Rosendale said. “And we had the Keystone XL (pipeline), which was canceled on day one. We saw the Nord Stream II (pipeline) which was canceled soon after, the sanctions we had on that. We have seen President Biden cancel the deal with Iran, resume negotiations with them. And then we saw a terrible, terrible, restless withdrawal from Afghanistan. All of these things are what allowed (Russian President Vladimir) Putin to come in and invade Ukraine. And right now we have 105,000 people who have died in our own country. Last year, because of drug overdoses, the vast majority came from fentanyl. And it all came from Mexico, and for $8 billion. We can secure our own border, and I think that’s what we need to do.

Ronning and Buchanan called US involvement in the war necessary to avert a much larger global crisis.

“Matt’s responses on Ukraine reaffirm why I filed,” Buchanan said. “I think we need to keep funding it to get the job done. On nuclear weapons, I think that’s the scariest part. I remember the previous president, he tried to trash Ukraine. He tried to corrupt Ukraine through his work with (Ukrainian President Volodymyr) Zelenskyy. We must not ransack it or try to corrupt it like the previous administration. We must support them. I think the nuclear weapon must be managed. And I think the military is very careful how this is handled. But the pro-Putin part of the Republican Party allows this guy, Putin, to threaten military weapons. We would have to make a proportionate response. God forbid what that would be. But I think we need to keep a very close diplomatic and military eye on exactly what Putin has planned for the world. »

Ronning accused Rosendale of oversimplifying the war.

“Matt, you really need a history lesson. Do you feel bad about what happened in Ukraine? We all feel bad. Children were tortured. Whole towns were devastated. Men and women have their hands tied behind their backs. And they’ve been tortured and slaughtered. Graves have been uncovered recently. We all feel bad? Ronning said. “No. That’s not how we feel. We feel horrified. We feel mortified. And we feel like we’re not represented. You played blame and never gave an answer to the question. You blamed the Democrats, you blamed Biden. But I think you need to have a history lesson. First, on Keystone XL, Keystone XL was shut down by TransCanada. I think you need to have a history lesson on your votes.

Ronning said the United States should not only help Ukraine, but also help other allies not far from Russia. The United States needed to join forces with its allies and pursue a global response, as a global force, to the Russian invasion.

With mail-in ballots scheduled for October 14, criticism between the candidates has been heightened. Rosendale’s stance on Ukraine has been a sticking point, more than his Jan. 6, 2021, votes for not recognizing election results in several states. The morning before the PBS debate the Washington Post identified Montana as one of four states showing only Republican deniers on the US House ballot.

On the economy, Rosendale placed the causes of inflation directly on federal government spending, even taking a shot at the PPP’s Payroll Protection Program, an injection of fully canceled loans to the days of Trump pumping $1.8 billion into Montana business accounts in 2020.

“The best economists tell us that if the federal government continued to pump revenue into the economy when there was no purchasing power available there, it would drive up inflation rates. And that’s exactly what we’ve seen happen,” Rosendale said. “It’s no mystery. Fortunately, just one of the pieces of legislation passed under Democrat scrutiny over Congress, the Senate and the White House was for $1.9 trillion, which was supposed to have been for the so-called COVID relief Inspector General just came out in the last 30 days and identified $163 billion in waste and fraud, which they can’t even account for The PPP program, they found Another $80 billion in waste and fraud. So combined, you’re dealing with a quarter of a trillion dollars in waste and fraud that was basically fueling the economy. The other big driver of inflation is the price of fuel, we can’t ignore it and the Biden administration has lowered fuel production, crude oil production here nationally, by nearly 2 million barrels a day, we just saw OPEC come out and announce that she was going to reduce ire its production of 2 million barrels per day. But we’ll talk about that later. But our national production being reduced by the same amount, which increases the price of fuel, the cost of fuel affects each product, the freight to deliver these products. And that’s another thing that drives us to inflation, that we have a plan for how to turn the tide once the Republicans take control of Congress.

Buchanan agreed that federal spending was part of the problem, though he noted there were economic improvements, especially in the shipping industry. Billings investment adviser Buchanan said Federal Reserve actions to raise interest rates and slow government spending would work over time.

“A few months ago, actually when we filed, I filed, for the office, inflation was supposed to be transitory. The Fed literally thought it was transitory. Obviously, that’s not Not so. But I support the Fed. Those of us in business in the early 80’s remember what 16-18% (mortgage rates) meant. I met a lady in Wibaux the other night who paid, in those years, 17% for his first mortgage. We can’t go. So the pain right now is something that we really have to go through. It’s very painful for our investment accounts , and for gas and everything else, but we have to avoid the Fed, and I’ll get to the fiscal part in a moment, the Fed has to keep the brakes on so that we don’t fall into a stagflation environment or a period where rates are actually hurting the economy more than we are doing right now. r, I think both sides missed the mark in terms of overspending. I think there are several bills that have overstimulated the economy. I think we are in that period now. And we have to be very careful on the fiscal side, on the spending side, not to make the situation worse. Spending is not the way out of this cycle of inflation.

Ronning described the current economic crisis as dating back to political decisions made in the 1990s.

“It really happened because of the wrong policies, the economic policies of the 1980s and 1990s. When we shipped so many of our jobs to China,” Ronning said. “What we’ve seen during the pandemic is that the Chinese government kept its workers and kept its population indoors and locked down and isolated during the pandemic. And so those workers weren’t making a lot of the products that Americans need. And American manufacturing has to produce the supplies that we We also had a backup in the supply chain. So I think one of the things that Congress can do immediately is to attack that supply chain, we have to start to move these products from China to the United States, where our manufacturing can continue to progress. It also has to be looked at in the long term. The long term is to bring jobs back to the United States. We bring ns blue collar jobs, industrial jobs and manufacturing jobs in the United States and invest in the American workforce and in American productivity.