What Has Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Said About Education?
DeSantis claimed that one of the US's "vital national interests" was not the continuation of its support for Ukraine.

After the Republican Florida governor referred to the Russian invasion as a "territorial dispute," Ukraine has invited Ron DeSantis to visit there.

DeSantis made his comments in response to inquiries that were sent to potential Republican candidates for president in 2024, who are widely anticipated to run.

The former representative claimed that one of the U.S.'s "vital national interests" was not the continuation of its support for Ukraine.

The remark implied that if elected president, he would presumably cut back on aid.

Additionally, it put DeSantis on the same side as top Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, who has opposed U.S. support for Kyiv and criticized the Biden administration's handling of the conflict.

Their remarks highlight the conflict within the Republican Party between isolationists who are skeptical of offering military assistance and the party's established position, which is to back Kyiv.

"While the U.S. has many vital national interests... becoming further entangled in a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia is not one of them," DeSantis said in answer to a questionnaire from Fox News host Tucker Carlson.

The 44-year-old has been making all the necessary moves that indicate he will run against Trump for the Republican nomination, even though he hasn't formally declared his plan to do so.

When questioned the same way about whether U.S. support for Kyiv was essential for Washington, Trump responded: "No, it is for Europe. But not for the United States."

Ukraine's foreign ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko criticized DeSantis's comments and tweeted his invitation to the Republican governor on Tuesday, BBC reported.

"We are sure that as a former military officer deployed to a combat zone, Governor Ron DeSantis knows the difference between a 'dispute' and war," Nikolenko said.

"We invite him to visit Ukraine to get a deeper understanding of Russia's full-scale invasion and the threats it poses to U.S. interests."

DeSantis joined the U.S. Navy as an officer and was posted to its legal branch, the Judge Advocate General's (JAG) Corps, while he was a law student at Harvard University.

He worked with prisoners at Guantanamo Bay and served as a legal advisor to the elite U.S. Navy Seals who were deployed to Iraq during his time as a JAG officer.

Republicans have long argued that supporting Ukraine is in the U.S.'s best interest, including many top Republicans in the Senate.

Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina stated that Governor DeSantis' remarks showed "a misunderstanding of the situation" on his side.

"This is not a territorial conflict, it's a war of aggression. To say it doesn't matter is to say war crimes don't matter," Graham said.

Mike Pence, a former vice president, has also urged the U.S. to provide more assistance.

A vocal wing of the party, mainly in the House of Representatives, is opposed to the aid's continuation.

Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has backed Ukraine, but he recently stated that given the size of the U.S. debt, there "can't be a blank cheque" for the nation.

Congress has approved more than $112 billion (£92.47 billion) in funding for Ukraine, with backing from members of both parties.

In terms of financial contributions, the U.S. is Ukraine's biggest supporter. Along with training, logistics, and intelligence assistance, it covers the costs of drones, tanks, missiles, and other munitions systems.

For Ukrainians displaced by the war, humanitarian help has included food assistance, clean drinking water, medical supplies, and other necessities.

By paying civil servants, healthcare providers, and educators, financial assistance maintains Ukraine's government in operation.

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