President Joe Biden reversed his previous vow that the U.S. would not send offensive military weapons to Ukraine as part of that country’s fight against Russia’s invading troops. Whereas he previously indicated that such aid would bring about “World War III,” the White House confirmed earlier this month that 31 Abrams tanks would be dispatched to Ukraine at some point in the future.
Although there have been a number of outspoken critics who oppose sending billions of dollars and increasingly deadly military equipment to Ukraine, the Biden administration has secured some key support among Republican congressional leaders.
Late last year, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) declared that “providing assistance for Ukrainians to defeat the Russians is the number one priority for the United States right now according to most Republicans,” adding: “That’s how we see the challenges confronting the country at the moment.”
Mitch McConnell actually said yesterday that most Republicans #1 priority is … Ukraine.
I have yet to meet a single Republican that thinks that, but I guess the disconnect between actual republicans and DC swamp rats shouldn’t surprise anyone.
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) December 21, 2022
A recent Pew Research Center poll, however, sought to gauge the public’s support for ongoing U.S. aid to Ukraine and found that public sentiment has changed significantly in recent months.
According to pollsters, about 31% of respondents say that the current level of aid is appropriate and another one-fifth believe the U.S. should be doing more. More than one-fourth, however, now say that America is sending too much of its own resources to help Ukraine’s military.
The 26% who expressed that view in the most recent view represents a six-point increase since September and a staggering 19-point jump compared to when the same question was asked a short time after the Russian invasion began.
Contrary to McConnell’s declaration in December, the bulk of that change stems from decreased support among Republicans. The latest survey found that 40% of self-identified Republicans and independents that lean Republican believe the U.S. is providing too much Ukrainian aid — compared to 32% of this demographic who said the same thing during a poll last autumn.
Democrats and independents who lean toward that party are considerably less likely to believe that America is providing too much assistance, however, the 15% of that group recorded in the latest poll is three times as high as those who shared the same position in the aftermath of Russia’ invasion nearly a year ago.