54 ° F
Full Weather
Sponsored By:

GOP: Senate Faces Test Of American Leadership

Sponsored by:

U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered remarks on the Senate floor regarding national security priorities.

McConnell was Tuesday’s KVML “Newsmaker of the Day”. Here are his words:

“From the earliest days of Vladimir Putin’s escalation in Ukraine, America’s closest allies and partners have been paying close attention.

From halfway around the world in the Indo-Pacific, our friends have made it clear that in the Ukrainian people’s fight, they see their own future.

From Taiwan, ‘Ukraine’s survival is Taiwan’s survival.’

From Japan, ‘security in Europe and security in the Indo-Pacific are inseparable.’

From Australia, ‘It is absolutely in the interest of every free country that Putin’s aggression fails.’

But why? Why would peaceful people dare to get involved in others’ fights?

Why would leaders in Asia contribute billions of dollars and weapons to help Ukraine defeat Russian aggression?

Why would the Prime Minister of Japan and the President of South Korea bother with long journeys to wartime Kyiv to express solidarity with Ukraine?

Why not just pull up the drawbridge and keep quiet?

Because our allies and partners are not naïve.

Because they know that unchecked aggression begets more.

Because they know that victory for Russia means a green light for China.

Because they know that neglecting Ukraine’s fight to restore its sovereignty raises the costs of defending their own.

Our partners don’t have the luxury of pretending that the world’s most dangerous aggressors are someone else’s problem.

And neither do we.

So today, it is no exaggeration to say that the eyes of the world are on the United States Senate.

Our allies and partners are hoping that the indispensable nation – the leader of the free world – has the resolve to continue. And our adversaries are hoping for something quite different.

Friends and foes, alike, pay close attention to what we say here. And how we vote.

Because American leadership matters. And it is in question.

But let’s be absolutely clear:

The United States didn’t give our Greatest Generation to the fight against Nazi Germany or commit half a century of focus and resources to defeating Soviet communism just out of a sense of altruism. And we aren’t helping partners resist authoritarian aggression today out of some warm and fuzzy sense of charity.

We haven’t equipped the brave people of Ukraine, Israel, or Taiwan with lethal capabilities in order to win philanthropic accolades.

We’re not urgently strengthening defenses in the Indo-Pacific because it feels good.

We don’t wield American strength frivolously. We do it because it is in our own interest.

We equip our friends to face our shared adversaries so we’re less likely to have to spend American lives to defeat them.

For years, I’ve warned about the growing threats to America’s national security, and the growing coordination among our adversaries.

And for years, I’ve worked to steer greater investments toward the hard power needed to deter them.

The Russian despot trying to conquer Ukraine also wants to see America weakened.

The Chinese autocrat hoping to subjugate Taiwan also wants to consign American leadership to history.

The Iranian regime that equips the slaughter of Israeli Jews and a terrorist war on international commerce also wants to shatter our influence in the region and spill American blood in the process.

They tell us this by their actions.

Pretending not to hear them is not an option.

Delaying until the costs in American lives and treasure rise immeasurably is not an option.

The time to stand up to these gathering threats is right now.

Every night, millions of Americans sleep in peace because brave men and women continue to answer the call to serve in our nation’s armed forces.

Every day, millions of Americans turn for their livelihood to an economic order built and underwritten by American leadership.

And every time that peace and prosperity are threatened, we stand with allies and partners who trust in the righteousness of that leadership and the credibility of our commitments.

Today, the future of the world I’ve just described is in question.

The endurance of an order in which American support is craved and American strength is feared is in doubt.

And we, the United States of America, have the most to lose.

Ever since we came to the aid of our allies 80 years ago, America has been an inseparable partner in the security of Europe.

Not out of charity, but because our own security and prosperity is tied to it.

Ever since we were attacked in 1941, America has helped guarantee stability and free commerce in the Indo-Pacific.

Not as a moral gesture, but because we have core interests of our own in this critical part of the world.

Ever since the establishment of the modern Jewish state of Israel in 1948, America has stood by her.

Not out of generosity, but because of the enduring values and interests we share – in security, in democracy, and in peace.

I know it’s become quite fashionable in some circles to disregard the global interests we have as a global power. To bemoan the responsibilities of global leadership. To lament the commitment that has underpinned the longest drought of great power conflict in human history.

This is idle work for idle minds.

And it has no place in the United States Senate.

In this chamber, we must face the world as it is.

We must reject the dimmest and most shortsighted views of our obligations, and grapple instead with actual problems.

As they come. In the harsh light of day.

And today, the questions facing this body are quite simple.

Will we give those who wish us harm more reason to question our resolve? Or will we recommit to exercising American strength?

Will we give those who crave our leadership more reason to wonder if it’s in decline? Or will we invest in the credibility that underpins our entire way of life?

I cannot answer these questions for any one of my colleagues. But none of us can afford to get them wrong.”

The “Newsmaker of the Day” is heard every weekday morning at 6:45, 7:45 and 8:45 on AM 1450 and FM 102.7 KVML.