+ The Washington Post: Weaker than expected GOP results calm Europe’s nerves — for now
European allies worry US could dial back support for Ukraine
From The Washington Post:
‘If America starts to blink, other nations might as well,’ said one British member of Parliament
U.S. allies are concerned a Republican take-over of Congress will damage or severe our relationship that Biden has worked to heal in the wake of Trump’s carnage.
U.S. allies in Europe are growing increasingly concerned that the united front presented by the West in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could quickly unravel if Republicans are victorious in next week’s midterm elections, ceding an advantage to President Vladimir Putin just when Ukraine is making progress on the battlefield.
In the eight months since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, a rare level of transatlantic consensus has taken hold over the need to support Ukraine. Collectively, Ukraine’s allies have pledged over $93 billion in military, financial and humanitarian assistance, with the lion’s share of that promised by the United States.
Since comments by the House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) that a Republican-controlled House wouldn’t continue to issue “blank check” funding for Ukraine, officials in both Kyiv and Western Europe have begun to wonder if Ukraine can continue to count on the United States.
It’s unclear whether Republicans would carry out the threat to reduce funding for Ukraine if they do take control of House. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), in contrast, said a Republican Senate majority “will focus its oversight on ensuring timely delivery of needed weapons and greater allied assistance to Ukraine.”
President Biden’s effort to aid Ukraine has so far enjoyed broad bipartisan support, and public opinion polls show strong backing for continued U.S. assistance, with 72% of respondents telling a Chicago Council on Global Affairs poll last week that they support sending additional weapons and military aid to Ukraine — including 68% of Republicans.
But the mere suggestion that the U.S. might pull back has set off alarm bells in Western capitals.