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A U.S. Republican Party-affiliated group, Republicans for Ukraine, announced the launch of a $2 million ad campaign to gain more support for Ukraine among Republican voters, the Hill reported on Aug. 15.
The campaign, which will begin airing in advance of the first Republican primary debate on Aug. 23, features appeals from Republican voters for their party to continue supporting Ukraine.
One testimonial features a lifelong Republican voter who states, “I don’t understand some Republican politicians’ reluctance to support a fledgling democracy that is battling an aggressor.”
According to their national spokesman Gunner Ramer, the campaign is aimed at showing party leadership that “there are a lot of Republicans across the country who stand with Ukraine.”
There is a considerable gap between the levels of support for continued U.S. aid to Ukraine, with 71% of Republicans stating in a CNN survey on Aug 4. that the U.S. Congress “should not authorize new funding," while 61% of Democrats say that the U.S. “should do more."
Republican political strategist Sarah Longwell was alarmed by the results of the survey, inspiring her and co-founder Bill Kristol to launch the campaign, she stated in comments to the Washington Post.
Traditionally, the Republican party has been more focused on defense spending. Kristol, who served in the George H.W. Bush administration supported the war in Iraq and argued for military interventions in Iran.
Former President Donald Trump’s influence on Republican politics has dramatically changed the party, Ramer told CNN, making it “more protectionist” as well as less interested in defending U.S. allies abroad or promoting democracy.
Trump, who is the leading Republican candidate for the upcoming U.S. presidential election in 2024, said in July that there should be a pause on any future aid to Ukraine until there is a full investigation by the U.S. Congress into the business dealings of President Biden and his family, Washington Post reported.