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Tags: ken buck | biden | defense | russia | ukraine | invasion

Rep. Buck to Newsmax: Congress Would Be 'Sympathetic' to Defense Budget Hike

By    |   Thursday, 24 February 2022 02:17 PM EST

President Joe Biden will likely come to Congress to seek increases in the nation's defense budget in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and lawmakers are "going to be very sympathetic," to his request, Rep. Ken Buck said on Newsmax Thursday.

"At a time where a nuclear power has invaded a sovereign foreign country and is threatening the NATO alliance. I think Congress is going to be very sympathetic," the Colorado Republican said on Newsmax's "John Bachman Now."

"It is Congress' role to declare war, and I think before President Biden introduces troops into any conflict, he should come to Congress, but in terms of just preparing and making sure America is ready for whatever the eventuality is, I think Congress is going to be very, very willing to move forward in that way," he continued.

Buck added that there will be "serious ramifications after Putin's actions against Ukraine, and he believes Biden will seek increases in the national defense budget as a result. 

"Our nuclear weapons are old, and frankly, we need upgrades in our nuclear arsenal, so I think there's going to be a lot of different discussions," the congressman said. 

Buck also said that he doesn't think Putin will pull out of Ukraine any time soon, and as a result of the invasion, "NATO is going to be more united than ever," meaning that "defense budgets in the NATO countries will be increased dramatically."

The effects of the invasion, meanwhile, will be felt economically in the United States, including with hikes in the price of fuel, said Buck, but he's not sure that Biden will take the steps necessary to keep prices at the pump down. 

"One of the things that President Biden can do, but I'm not sure that he will, is to start increasing production in this country of oil and natural gas so that our energy prices don't go up, and our citizens don't start feeling this more and more at the pump," the congressman added. 

Biden has discussed several sanctions against Ukraine, but he should have acted before the attacks were launched, not after, said Buck. 

"There were 120,000 Russian troops on Ukraine's border or more, so there was no reason not to start taking these steps before Russia invaded so that they would be feeling the squeeze during this time frame," said Buck. "If the world unites, and I'm sure that China won't be with the rest of the world, but if the world unites and imposes strict sanctions on Russia, the Russian people are going to feel the effects of this war."

Buck, a leader on the issue of cybersafety, said that the United States is "very vulnerable" to cyberattacks being launched on U.S. targets by Russia or China, but if that happens, it would be an "act of war" and the repercussions would be severe. 

"The United States would respond in kind, and I don't think that's something that either Russia or China, our two primary adversaries, want to engage in," said Buck. "We have very advanced cybercapabilities in this country, and I think that if President Putin decides he wants to go down that path he will be met with a very, very strong response by the United States. It is always a prelude to war."

Meanwhile, optics matter, the congressman told Newsmax, but Biden "has not shown strength" as president. 

"He hasn't shown strength in the withdrawal in Afghanistan," said Buck. "He hasn't shown strength in other areas. I think it's time that President Biden shows strength. I also think it's time that the secretary of defense and secretary of state take a more aggressive position on this. We keep talking about diplomacy. The time for diplomacy is over."

Instead, it's time that the nation's European allies know the United States stands strongly with them and that sanctions against Russia are strong, said Buck. 

"There are sanctions that hurt a country generally, and there are sanctions that hurt the people that are most closely tied to Putin and those sanctions, those very personal sanctions should be imposed very quickly," he said.

Buck was interviewed as news broke about people being arrested in Moscow for protesting against the invasion, and he commented that many tech companies have "bowed to pressure from China and Russia" and agree to what their governments want — to suppress speech in those countries. 

However, the social media companies are also suppressing speech in the United States through censoring conservatives, said Buck. 

"We are doing our very best in Congress to pass antitrust legislation so that we have competition in the marketplace, so those who use social media can choose from a variety of platforms," the congressman said, adding that bills are moving through the Senate and "hopefully we start to see some floor action in the House in the next couple of months."

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Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

President Joe Biden will likely come to Congress to seek increases in the nation's defense budget in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and lawmakers are "going to be very sympathetic," to his request, Rep. Ken Buck said on Newsmax Thursday.
ken buck, biden, defense, russia, ukraine, invasion
Thursday, 24 February 2022 02:17 PM
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