Vice President Kamala Harris on Thursday blasted Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) for saying the war between Ukraine and Russia is a “territorial dispute,” arguing that if the rising Republican “really understand(s) the issues, you probably would not make statements like that.”
“When you have had the experience of meeting and understanding the significance of international rules and norms and the importance of the United States of America standing firm and clear about the significance of sovereignty and territorial integrity… you probably would not make statements like that,” Harris said in an interview on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.
The Florida governor has faced backlash from both Republicans and Democrats for his comments on the U.S. involvement in the Ukrainian-Russian war. In response to a questionnaire of potential 2024 presidential candidates by Fox News’s Tucker Carlson, DeSantis said the war was not in America’s “vital” national interests.
The comment from DeSantis played off a rising tide of isolationism regarding the war in the Republican party. Some lawmakers have started to voice concerns about the level of economic support the U.S. has offered Ukraine, arguing the country should not be offering its ally a “blank check.”
But other GOP figures pounced on DeSantis for the comments. Republican Sens. Marco Rubio (Fla.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Todd Young (Ind.) and John Thune (S.D.) were among the Republicans to push back against DeSantis on his remarks.
DeSantis’s wading into the foreign policy debate comes as he is considering a White House bid in 2024, a run that he is widely expected to make. Polling shows that he is one of two frontrunners in the race, including former President Trump.