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According to a December 2023 study, around half of American Republicans view the assistance provided to Ukraine as excessive. Around 16% of Democrats agree.

Chart

USA is spending 877 billion dollars on its military a year. Total support (military + financial) sent from the USA (from the start of the war, until the end of January) was around 66 billion. Compared to the yearly investment, that's barely a blip on the radar, and that's not even counting the fact that most of aid was in the form of already existing equipment. In absolute numbers, it doesn't seem that much.

Why is it perceived as excessive in the USA, and why does it differ so much for each political affiliation, when it's an objective number that can be readily compared to the military budget?

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    The amount is an objective number but the estimation of what is excessive and what is reasonable is subjective. How expensive was the Iraq war again? And did they ever find any weapons of mass destruction? In comparison no US soldier dies in Ukraine which simply gets some US weapons and fights Russia with them instead of capitulating. Some would call that a bargain, others excessive. And if the circumstances are different the judgements also might be different. Commented Mar 9 at 0:43
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    This edit is not a more neutral tone. Without saying "by Republicans", it's a push question. While the body of the question clearly shows that it's a largely a Republican opinion, not mentioning it in the title makes it sound like its a prevalent general opinion. Which it is not. Suggesting that it is, and then asking "why", amounts to pushing a premise which is not in evidence, making this a push question. Commented Mar 13 at 13:58
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    I don't really care about USA party politics one way or the other. I don't appreciate having that pushed onto me by people editing my question to present a certain narrative, using my (coincidentally popular) question as a vehicle to show off their opinions. Commented Mar 13 at 19:37
  • @RuslanOblov Titles shall be as specific as possible while still being compact enough. One could include Republicans in the title because the question is about them. In that way this would be justified and not a specific narrative at all. It would simply give readers more information earlier in the process, which would be good. Maybe editors simply wanted to improve the question. Commented Mar 15 at 18:44
  • @RadicallyReasonable No need to say "Republicans only". Yes, it's most prevalent on the Rep side of things, but I am sure you'll find plenty of Dem voters begrudging the issue. It is a lot of money. Anyway, answerers don't have that hard a time pointing out the difference in support between the 2 parties, no need to be so pushy to have the question asked "just so", in the way you prefer. Commented Mar 15 at 19:05

9 Answers 9

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Any amount of assistance to Ukraine will be perceived as excessive - if you are on the side of Russia, Ukraine's enemy in this war.

And many pro-Trump Republicans in the US Congress and Senate, as well as many Republicans among the American electorate are precisely on the side of Russia - not Ukraine.

They even make no effort in concealing it.

References:

There are too many to list here, just search the internet for "Ukraine" and the name of the Republican of your choice in the US Congress or Senate. For example:

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.):

Republican leaders in Congress are torn over what to do with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene after the congresswoman spoke at a weekend event organized by a white nationalist who marveled over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as the crowd erupted in chants of “Putin!”

...

The America First Political Action Committee was launched by Nick Fuentes, who is considered by anti-hate groups as a white nationalist. He grew to prominence after the 2017 neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville that brought the far-right’s enthusiasm for Donald Trump into the streets during the first year of his presidency.

Greene kicked off the group’s weekend conference in Florida, which was billed as a far-right alternative to the more established Conservative Political Action Conference that drew Trump and other GOP elected officials to Orlando over the weekend.

The congresswoman was welcomed to the stage after Fuentes led the crowd of mostly white men into a rousing embrace of Russia, marveling at its show of strength invading Ukraine.

“Can we get a round of applause for Russia?” he asked. The crowd chanted “Putin! Putin!”

GOP torn as Greene speaks to far right amid 'Putin!' chants | AP News


Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.):

“The House bill includes $300 million for Ukraine, which I will not vote for. To cut spending and please the members that don’t want to vote for Ukraine, let’s take out the $300 M for Ukraine and pass this otherwise great bill,” Greene continued.

Earlier this year, she offered amendments to an annual defense policy bill to end assistance to Ukraine as it fends off an invasion from Russia.

McCarthy also denied a request by Zelensky to address Congress on Thursday. He said his denial was because there was no time for an address.

“Zelensky asked us for a joint session; we just didn’t have time,” McCarthy told reporters on Capitol Hill, according to videos of the exchange.

Greene flips Pentagon funding vote over Ukraine money with Zelensky in town | The Hill


Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL):

And that grueling process has Gaetz, an arch-opponent of U.S. aid to Ukraine, aiming for another victory.

“A majority of Republicans are against sending more money to Ukraine in the House of Representatives,” Gaetz said, referring to the 117 Republicans who voted against a bill to provide $300 million worth of assistance. “And we have something called the Hastert Rule that would prohibit any speaker from bringing legislation to the floor that doesn't have the support of the majority of the majority.”

That legislation garnered 311 votes in the House, nonetheless. And another amendment to prohibit all aid to Ukraine, offered by Gaetz the same week, drew even less House Republican support when it failed on a 339-93 vote. One of those votes in favor of Gaetz’s ban came from Johnson, however.

After speaker fight, Gaetz eyes his next takedown: Ukraine aid | Congressman Matt Gaetz


And, of course, there is former President Donald Trump himself:

Donald Trump has said that Vladimir Putin is “very savvy” and made a “genius” move by declaring two regions of eastern Ukraine as independent states and moving Russian armed forces to them.

Trump said he saw the escalation of the Ukrainian crisis on TV “and I said: ‘This is genius.’ Putin declares a big portion of the Ukraine … Putin declares it as independent. Oh, that’s wonderful.”

The former US president said that the Russian president had made a “smart move” by sending “the strongest peace force I’ve ever seen” to the area.

Trump, a long-term admirer of Putin who was impeached over allegations he threatened to withhold aid to Ukraine unless it could help damage the reputation of Joe Biden, praised the Russian president’s moves while also claiming that they would not have happened if he was still president.

“Here’s a guy who’s very savvy … I know him very well,” Trump said of Putin while talking to the The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show. “Very, very well. By the way, this never would have happened with us. Had I been in office, not even thinkable. This would never have happened.

“But here’s a guy that says, you know, ‘I’m gonna declare a big portion of Ukraine independent’ – he used the word ‘independent’ – ‘and we’re gonna go out and we’re gonna go in and we’re gonna help keep peace.’ You gotta say that’s pretty savvy.”

Trump praises ‘genius’ Putin for moving troops to eastern Ukraine | Donald Trump | The Guardian

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    I find this answer a bit hysterical to be honest. It explains nothing and consists of cheap takedowns. This is a nuanced issue involving perceptions of current events by the society. Commented Mar 9 at 23:04
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    This answer has lots of quotes, but those quotes fail to actually support the answer's claim that "many Republicans are precisely on the side of Russia". The first quote is effective, but the other three quotes don't make that point at all. The second quote shows that helping Ukraine isn't a priority, but that's different from explicitly wanting Russia to win. The third quote confirms that Gaetz does not want to support Ukraine, but offers no explanation as to why. The fourth quote shows that Trump admires Putin's political tactics, but one can admire an opponent and still want them to lose.
    – T Hummus
    Commented Mar 9 at 23:12
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    The claim might ultimately be true, but this answer does not provide convincing evidence that that is the case. Based on the provided quotes, it is just as likely that most Republicans just think we should stay neutral in foreign conflicts, rather than specifically supporting Russia.
    – T Hummus
    Commented Mar 9 at 23:14
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    @THummus The first quote literally contradicts the claim. The quoted part literally starts off with "Republican leaders in Congress are torn over what to do with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene" because of her appearance at the event. The beginning of the part omitted with ellipsis in the answer is, "House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy called the congresswoman’s speech on the same stage “unacceptable.”" It supports the claim that some in the GOP (namely, MTG) holds that view... and that most, including the leadership, very much don't.
    – reirab
    Commented Mar 10 at 1:45
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To put it simply there are fairly influential people in the US who argue that Ukraine is not a 'vital interest' to the US. They may phrase this is various ways, and sometimes walk back from the sharper pronouncements, but the idea is basically the same.

This used to be articulated in more detail in the past, e.g. in 2014 one could read:

Once, foreign policy experts talked about “vital interests." The term has fallen into disuse, partly because there are no hard and fast rules for calculating what distinguishes the "vital" from the merely "interesting." If advocates wanted their country to do a thing they would call it a vital interest; if they did not, then they would not. But students of foreign policy did seem to agree on one thing: vital interests were the things you were willing to have your soldiers die for and kill for. By this measure, even the most hawkish politicians in the United States, all of whom have eschewed any desire for a shooting match, have agreed that the United States has no vital interests in Ukraine.

What would vital interests look like if they were present? Vital interests affect the safety, sovereignty, territorial integrity, and power position of the United States, or indeed of any country. If, in the worst case, all Ukraine were to "fall" to Russia, it would have little impact on the security of the United States. Russia is no longer the strong country that the USSR was: its GDP is dwarfed by that of the United States. Its non-nuclear military power is woefully insufficient for the conquest of the major states of Eurasia. The possession of Crimea, a grab for Ukraine's eastern provinces, or even the occupation of all Ukraine would not change this.

That piece also argues (mistakenly IMHO) that Belarus is a rather neutral 'buffer zone', not hosting Russian bases/forces, so that if Ukraine ends up like Belarus is no big deal, little would change in terms of NATO-Russia positioning of forces. So, yeah generally one version of the argument is discounting the strength and importance of Russia's presence anywhere.


And of course, there are those who say that the US shouldn't be in NATO much if at all, at least not with troops/bases. A version of this idea is that the US should be all-focused on countering China:

The United States cannot maintain its role as the cornerstone of European security while successfully competing with a growing China forever.

And that additionally US Asia's allies should also be paying more to maintain their independence from China:

And the cheap‐​riding that afflicts the U.S. alliance in Europe also addles its alliances in Asia.

This version of the claim is that US is paying too much for all their allies security, essentially, while the latter are 'free riding'.

Anyhow, another part of the argument is that the US "won" in Ukraine already

The United States fought two wars to prevent a European hegemon from emerging in the 20th century. There is no potential European hegemon on or even over the horizon at the present. For all Russia’s bluster, it’s struggling to take even part of a much smaller, poorer neighbor—let alone hold it. It’s time to take the win.

... despite the small progress that Russia has been making on the ground and Putin's pronoucements that Ukraine would collapse in a week without Western aid. (Those claims implicitly get discounted.)


And the opposite of that, the claim that rather than it being a 'win', it's not clear how the US could win, or what a win would look like:

“We stand with Ukraine against Putin’s aggression. Everyone understands that he must be stopped. This is a very serious issue,” [Johnson] said. “But the White House is seeking billions in funding on that issue.”

“They haven’t given us any clear strategy, no appropriate oversight,” [Johnson] continued. “They’ve not explained to us what the endgame is.”

Finally, there's the 'but the Southern border comes first' argument.

“We understand the dire situation that we’re in. But the White House has to take care of our nation, and they’re not doing it,” [Johnson] said. “And that’s why our constituents are demanding answers, and that’s why we have to hold the line on this. We’ve got to force their hand to stem the flow at our southern border.”

And, of course, those who say that also reject the Senate compromise as not being hardcore enough on immigration.

A version of the latter is that the aid sent to Ukraine was more than enough to "build a wall" at the border with Mexico:

According to Breitbart, as the Trump administration spent $15 billion to cover 450 miles of the US-Mexico border with a wall of the nearly 2,000-mile border, it would roughly cost $60 billion to cover the entire border.

“Lo and behold, here is Ukraine being given, by the US, $US60 billion, which is apparently enough to build a wall across the entire US-Mexican border.”

This has been repeated in various ways in the past, e.g. in March 2022 (as IIRC the first package for Ukraine was being voted on):

Republicans just agreed to spend $14 Billion to defend Ukraine’s border. They refused $4 Billion to defend ours.

And actually made it into Senator Tuberville's speech recently--Feb 12, 2024:

We should not send a dime to Ukraine until our borders are fully secure. We have already given Ukraine more than $120 billion. This is more than enough money to secure every border in our country.

N.B. he also says that the money has been essentially wasted on killings that didn't lead to a diplomatic solution:

Unfortunately, but predictably, the $120 billion we’ve sent to Ukraine has resulted in a years-long stalemate that has cost hundreds of thousands of lives—both Ukrainian and Russian. [...] None of this has worked to either deter Russia or force parties to the table to negotiate a diplomatic solution. [...] Bring this war to an end. Stop the killing and bloodshed.

And there's the [final] jab that the US (administration) is trying to slow down Israel's war instead:

Joe Biden’s idea of diplomacy is sending Antony Blinken to Israel to tell Israel to slow down the war in Gaza. That’s not diplomacy. We need some REAL diplomacy in Ukraine.

And the slightly more elaborate version/list of America's priorities with Europe somewhere last:

There have been 160 attacks on our troops in the Middle East since October 7. We are also facing the possibility of war in the South China Sea, with China threatening Taiwan. A real leader has the right priorities. We cannot get involved in every conflict around the world. [...] A land war in Europe is not America’s top priority. Even President Obama said, 13 years ago, we needed to “pivot to Asia” 13 years ago. [...] President Xi is watching America bankrupting ourselves for a war that gains us absolutely nothing.

Also, Tuberville says that that no aid should be sent to Gaza (either) because Hamas is stealing it. And right after he follows with (it's hard to conclude not intentionally juxtaposing) the claim that Ukraine has been wasting the aid through notorious corruption and "enormous theft".

Matt Gaetz said something similar:

I am against Joe Biden’s proposed $100 billion supplemental that combines aid for Ukraine and Israel together. It will create more challenges for our Southern Border and won’t make us safer abroad. Congress should not use the goodwill Americans have toward Israel to drag along our continued involvement in Ukraine.

Further, in the clip he describes Ukrane as a 'political weight' juxtposed to the 'close alliance with Israel' that needs to be 'well resourced'. Asked if he's worried about the outcome of the war in Europe, Gaetz says he's opposed to spending another $100 billion to find out 'which guy gets to run Crimea' and says he's worried about nuclear escalation [from Russia] and the well-being of US citizens if this 'tomfoolery' were to continue.


BTW, Trump recently suggested that the aid to Ukraine should take the form of loans. And he explicitly argued that all US aid should be like that, in fact:

Trump wrote in an all-caps post on his social media site Truth Social: “NO MONEY IN THE FORM OF FOREIGN AID SHOULD BE GIVEN TO ANY COUNTRY UNLESS IT IS DONE AS A LOAN, NOT JUST A GIVEAWAY. IT CAN BE LOANED ON EXTRAORDINARILY GOOD TERMS, LIKE NO INTEREST AND AN UNLIMITED LIFE, BUT A LOAN NEVERTHELESS.

He added: "THE DEAL SHOULD BE (CONTINGENT!) THAT THE U.S. IS HELPING YOU, AS A NATION, BUT IF THE COUNTRY WE ARE HELPING EVER TURNS AGAINST US, OR STRIKES IT RICH SOMETIME IN THE FUTURE, THE LOAN WILL BE PAID OFF AND THE MONEY RETURNED TO THE UNITED STATES.”

And he quickly found backing from Sen. Lindsey Graham on that idea. OTOH Romney called it a 'fig leaf', saying that Ukraine isn't going be able to repay.

And Trump also made the argument from priorities, saying about the war in Europe "it affects them much more. We have an ocean between us". And his general idea of how the US should transact in these matters: "You don’t pay your bills, you don’t get protection ... we are not going to be the stupid country of the world any longer." Video here of the latter speech. Trump also claimed there the US gave $200 billion to Ukraine, and Europe only $25.

And since the asker of this Q has already declared this answer to be "soapboxing", here's some of that to balance Trump's last claim somewhat:

enter image description here

FWTW, I also found this poll from September that found that "Non-Trump Republicans" found more value in the past aid to Ukraine, at least. The Q does seem separate the military from the civilian aid, and throws the defense budget figure in there for comparison, so it may be a bit leading. Anyhow, it's interesting that 70% of Trump supporters found the aid not worthwhile even from this perhaps most favorable prism, while the rest of Republicans were more split (53% : 46%).

enter image description here

Anyhow, if Orban is to be believed reporting on his conversation with Trump, this is part of Trump's plan for ending the war quickly.


Finally, while [thus far] I was not able to find Democratic Party congresspersons who oppose[d] Ukraine funding in itself, there certainly is extra-parliamentary "hard left" opposition, and their arguments are that the US is looking to transform Ukraine into 'Big Israel' etc.

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  • I often hear Senator Tuberville cited but he is only a single GOP Senator out of many, so it's not clear why his opinion should weigh more. Also he is kind of quite controversial. Maybe he is not well representing the majority of Republicans? Commented Mar 11 at 22:36
  • @NoDataDumpNoContribution: He happens to have distilled all the talking points against the aid in one short speech? Anyhow, I'm waiting for your better sourced/scientific/poll-based answer. Commented Mar 12 at 2:03
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One metric by which it is not excessively excessive is by comparison to expenditures on Afghanistan, which, as of 2022, had been about $2.313T (yes, T stands for Trillion).

Human and Budgetary Costs to Date of the U.S. War in Afghanistan, 2001-2022 | Figures | Costs of War

Even in later years of that conflict, spending was still on the order of 45B.

The comparison to the US DoD budget is not that relevant, but, as per littleadv's answer, it does represent a large chunk compared to usual US foreign aid, of which the Republicans are traditionally skeptical.

About half of Democrats (49%) say economic aid to needy people around the world should be increased, up modestly from 41% in 2017. Six years ago, just 30% said spending should be increased.

Republicans are much less supportive of increased economic assistance to the needy around the world – just 15% say spending should be increased, and this number has not changed much since 2009.

However, one way it can be compared to the Defense budget is that Defense spending is usually ring-fenced from budgetary concerns on the Republican side, as it concerns containing US adversaries. Additionally, the military-side (biggest part, by far) of the Afghanistan spending was funded through special appropriations riders on the defense budget.

Last, but not least, the nature of the spending is different (as mentioned in an Economist article I can't find anymore): most of the US military aid stays in the US economy, as there is less on-location spending than in the case of Afghanistan.

Guess Putin's Russia is A-OK to the new incarnation of Reagan's party and not worth containing. Arsenal of democracy, indeed.

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  • BTW, there's the argument (in some GOP quarters) that 'our troops in Iraq are being attacked', which should have higher priority, so implicitly there's an argument there that they can't be withdrawn, which is in a way arguing from sunk cost: "we spent trillions [on wars] to put those troops there", although it's not quite voiced like that. Commented Mar 9 at 6:16
  • Somewhat related: politics.stackexchange.com/questions/84840/… Commented Mar 9 at 18:43
  • Unfortunately the question doesn't ask if there are objective reasons why it might be called excessive, it only asks why some poll resulted in it to be perceived as such. People may simply not answer truthfully. Or maybe they were ignorant about the costs of the wars in the last twenty years and only woke up now (wait, what, so expensive, if just someone had told me, we should have never invaded Iraq or Afghanistan). Who knows. Commented Mar 11 at 22:40
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Since the question specifically focuses on Republicans being more inclined to oppose Ukraine spending:

The typical reason sold to the base, is "the border".

Republican House leadership has the policy objective, of reducing unofficial flow of people via Mexico. This in turn requires increase in funding for the DHS and its component CBP.

As to why UA funding is perceived/presented as expensive, pro-wall Republicans make a similar argument of relative size of the funds as the Question does. The CBP needs only $10-20B or so? Lots of good construction jobs would be created. etc etc.

Behind the scenes tho, there is debate even among foreign policy hawks (who these days are bipartisan), about where US foreign policy should prioritize its resources. It's a 3-way debate between

  • slowing down China
  • containing Russia
  • doing something in Gaza/Lebanon/Yemen/Syria/Iraq/Iran ... but without undercutting Israel. Iran is the big ask, but Lebanon would probably do.

The subtext of that debate among policymakers, is that the US can't afford all three any longer.

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  • This doesn't really explain why the aid to Ukraine in particular is perceived differently than the aid to Israel or Taiwan, for example, amongst the Republicans. Which is kindof the whole point of the question.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 8 at 23:54
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    @littleadv - House Republicans aren't making that comparison. They're holding it up as part of obtaining a quid pro quo. Ukraine for Border. Probably under the guise of a last-minute budget deal. I would expect that Israel aid can sail thru US Congress any day of the week, unless the figure is not high enough. Re the policy discussion about priorities - members of Congress aren't there yet, can't talk about that openly. But the think tankers are.
    – Pete W
    Commented Mar 9 at 0:02
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    another better example to the earlier comment, about policy discussion on balancing priorities - atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/new-atlanticist/…
    – Pete W
    Commented Mar 9 at 0:15
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Why is it perceived as excessive in the USA, and why does it differ so much for each political affiliation, when it's an objective number that can be readily compared to the military budget?

It can objectively be compared to aid to other countries, which is more relevant than comparing to the military budget. It is in fact objectively high, although "excessive" is a matter of opinion.

The US aid to Ukraine in the last couple of years was about $17B. Comparing to Israel, the largest overall recipient of US aid, the aid to Ukraine was 5+ times more per year in the last couple of years. In addition there's almost $80B in military aid, compared to $14B to Israel (which is also currently at war and has much higher support within the Republican party).

There's a good reason for that (Ukraine is defending itself against Russian aggression), but for many Republicans nowadays defending allies against Russian aggression doesn't seem to be much of a priority. On the flip side, many Republicans consider Ukraine a corrupt country in cahoots with the Democrats, based on the now debunked "Burisma" allegations. As the result, Democrats/Independents seem to be more in favor of aiding Ukraine in their fight than Republicans.

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It is hard to tell as many of the arguments being made are inconsistent and incoherent

There are several assumption in the question that might not be true. The biggest one is that Republican opposition is based on rational arguments. Perhaps the reasons they give in public are merely rationalisations for positions they are taking for other reasons they might not want to admit.

Do republicans actually think the aid is excessive? The key arguments in favour of this are usually not that it is excessive but that other national priorities are more important (a general argument about something being excessive is weak; an argument that the money could be better spent elsewhere is more forceful especially given the small proportion of the defence budget that ukraine aid represents).

For some time the major argument of this form was that the Democrats must prioritise the border first. This argument was made widely for months before the Democrats negotiated a big set of proposals, satisfactory to previous conservative positions, that would be joined in a bill with Ukraine aid. The joint bill failed and was rejected by the House Speaker probably before he had time to read it after pressure from Trump, who certainly didn't have time to read it. This made a mockery of their previous arguments that their issue was failing to prioritize the border. Worse, at least one senator (Tim Scott from memory) repeated the border-first argument days after the rejection of the combined bill. This seemed more like a post-facto excuse from someone who had forgotten what the original rationale was for voting against Ukraine aid by itself but also ridiculous given the border actions he mentioned had just been rejected with little additional rationale. The plausible explanation here is that Trump wanted the border to remain an issue so he could attack Biden (he doesn't actually want a border fix as the issue is too electorally salient to give up).

A more logically coherent argument could be made on the grounds of American isolationism. Why should America care about what happens in a far away country of whom americans know little? Some, but not many have made the argument that way (not least because it would also call into question aid to Israel and Taiwan who have more popular support).

A more plausible and realistic argument for why republicans don't want to support Ukraine is that Trump told them not to. This fits the timing of some of the opposition (but leaves the claimed rationales for opposition as post-facto justifications for a position they are being forced into by their powerful leader). Perhaps there are no good logical reasons and they are just doing what is necessary to avoid political repercussions from Trump.

But why does Trump oppose Ukraine aid? This is, again, seeking facts and logic which may not exist. Trump may hate Ukraine because his attempt to blackmail Zelinsky into giving up dirt on Biden in return for not blocking military aid (pre war) was the primary cause of his embarrassing first impeachment. He is certainly known to hold grudges. Zelinsky wasn't as pliable a leader as the type Trump prefers. He has publicly stated admiration for strong leaders with no seeming differentiation for those pushing the limits of liberal democracy (eg Orban or Erdogan) or downright despots (Like Putin, Kim Jong Un or Xi). He seems to like leaders who praise him regardless of the sincerity of that praise. In the case of Ukraine, Zelinsky was a good deal less ready to praise Trump or comply with his desires than Putin (who he trusted in public over his own advisors early in his presidency).

This last explanation has psychological plausibility even though it doesn't represent a good logical explanation balancing up the pros and cons for America's position in the world or the USA's long term interests.

Perhaps Trump has some carefully weighed arguments for his position. Perhaps some Republicans do. But Trump has not said much to make any such rational case and many other Republicans have struggled to make consistent arguments over time (the border-first argument looked good until they rejected action on that).

This psychological explanation should be taken seriously. But it makes a mockery of looking at stated explanations for opposition to Ukraine because they are all merely cover stories to hide the fact that many Republicans are doing what a politically powerful Trump wants whether he a has a good argument or not.

Oh, and the public opinions on this follow the political debate and don't lead it, so public opinion is not itself a good reason for the political positions.

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"According to a December 2023 study, around half of American Republicans view the assistance provided to Ukraine as excessive. Around 16% of Democrats agree."

First, I would say we must start with "the other team's ideas are bad" sentiment to explain the 34% larger perception that this is an excessive spend between Republican and Democratic views.

Second, I propose that the unfortunate framing of the assistance is a basis for some part of the 16% of both parties thinking this aid is excessive - "The government allocates xx billion to help Ukraine defend itself."

This is perceived as if the money is sent to the Ukraine. Instead most of the money (collected from our taxes, and future taxes) is sent to defense contractors in the USA (this industry makes up 10% of the US manufacturing jobs), to pay them to employ Americans to build military equipment and make artillery shells and bullets; these items are then sent (by American shipping companies) to the Ukraine.

The money stays here, and bolsters the economy of the US.

Our young citizens stay here, rather than dying on foreign soil.

And our unemployment rate is at 50 year lows.

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Question:

Why is the help provided for Ukraine by the USA government perceived as excessive?

Short Answer:

Perceived as excessive by half of Republicans? Because half of Republicans believe whatever Donald Trump tells them. The military experts and foreign policy experts of either party do not support there position.

Today not even the Republican Speaker of House supports this position. So the Republicans are searching for fig leaf to hide their exposure for having threatened vital American foreign policy interests AGAIN!!

Lack of a clear plan, money better spent on domestic issues, the boarder, and oversite; indeed.

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  • I see that you have a lot of ranting to do, but this is not the place to do it. You have not given an answer, you have shared an emotional tirade. Stack exchange is not the place for this sort of posting. Commented Mar 20 at 18:34

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