Portman: Helping Ukraine 'Is About the Fight for Freedom'


Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that helping Ukraine defend itself is “about the fight for freedom” when asked to respond to Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s questions about Russia and Ukraine.

During his Fox News show, Carlson said, “At this point, NATO exists primarily to torment Vladimir Putin, with however many faults, has no intention of invading Western Europe. Vladimir Putin does not want Belgium. He just wants to keep his western border secure. ”

Anchor Chuck Todd said, “I’m sure you love being asked about a cable TV news host, but it has led quite a bit of rank and file Americans to ask this question. Are you worried that there is a movement in the Republican Party that has become pro-Putin?”

Portman said, “I wouldn’t call it a movement, but I think we have to be sure we’re understanding what’s going on here. The Ukrainians are not asking for American troops to come to Ukraine. I’ve gotten a number of phone calls from these cable news shows saying, you know, we’ve got to keep our troops out of there. They’re not asking for our troops, nor is anybody talking about that. We are talking about strengthening the countries around the region who are looking for more help, NATO countries like the Baltics, like Poland.”

He added, “Second, again, this is about the fight for freedom. This is a country that has decided that they want to be like us. They want to be a democracy. They want to respect the rule of law. They want to have a free enterprise system that’s strong and vibrant.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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