Ukraine Fights To Survive, And Two GOP Dipsh*ts Want To Withhold Aid Until Biden Abolishes Mexico
A resident of Kharkiv, remarkably unconcerned about the US-Mexico border. PBS NewsHour screenshot.

As Russian artillery and missiles fell on heavily populated civilian areas in Ukrainian cities, let's take a look at bills introduced by two Republican members of Congress that would limit the US response to the crisis as long as there are still undocumented immigrants coming across the US-Mexico border. The bills, introduced by Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-Montana) and Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-North Carolina) are meant to put the brutal invasion of Ukraine into what the sponsors appear to believe is the proper perspective. We should note that both bills were introduced during the run-up to the Russian invasion, during the second week of February, but the blog run by, which keeps track of pending legislation, helpfully reminded us of the bills Tuesday.

On the one hand, the UN estimated on Tuesday that at least 136 Ukrainian civilians have died so far, with over 400 civilians injured, although the UN human rights office said the real number was almost certainly higher. Separately, the Ukrainian government said early Wednesday that Russian shelling and bombing of Kharkiv had killed at least 21 and wounded 112.

On the other hand, lots of people from Central America have been crossing the border between the US and Mexico, frequently turning themselves in to the Border Patrol so they can claim asylum. This really makes rightwing politicians like Rosendale and Cawthorn angry, since like the Russian invasion of Ukraine, it involves a border, albeit without the shelling, bombing, alleged illegal use of cluster munitions, and the widespread death and destruction. But other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, the parallels really are breathtaking.

Matt Rosendale: Ukraine Can Wait Until We Stop These Children Seeking Asylum

Rosendale's bill, the "Secure America’s Borders First Act," would put a hold on all US military spending for Ukraine until Donald Trump's border WALL is completed (and it must be 30 feet high) and the US gains "operational control" of the border as defined in the 2006 "Secure Fence Act." That means Ukraine will have to wait years for completion of WALL, and also until the US has achieved

the prevention of all unlawful entries into the United States, including entries by terrorists, other unlawful aliens, instruments of terrorism, narcotics, and other contraband.

Rep. Rosendale didn't get into the details of how Ukraine is supposed to hold out against the enormous Russian military until every single unauthorized entry into the US had been stopped, but he did offer some terribly patriotic words in a February 8 press release about how the US-Mexico border is exactly the same as Russia's invasion of Ukraine. He explained that the USA has "no legal or moral obligation to come to Ukraine’s aid."

Further, the press release suggested that if you want to talk about an invasion, then how about the "invasion of over 2 million illegal aliens at our southern border," huh? Rosendale left out a couple things, like the fact that the vast majority of those people were actually turned away. Roughly a half million (mostly children or families with children) were placed in formal immigration proceedings, many of which are also likely to end in deportation. Also, not a single one of them came with armored troop carriers, machine guns, tanks, attack aircraft, cluster munitions, or short-range ballistic missiles.

Rosendale's statement excoriated "'America Last’ politicians on both sides of the aisle" who called for protecting Ukraine while failing to "secure our own border and protect our own territorial integrity," because asylum seekers are exactly the same as the entire Russian military.

Tuesday, Rosendale retweeted the GovTrack story, adding

The American people are sick and tired of career politicians consistently putting the interests of foreign nations above our own, we must put America first (Flag Emoji)

So he doesn't seem to be sorry then.

Madison Cawthorn: Help Ukraine, But Only If We Have A Pointless Military Parade At The Border

Cawthorn's bill, the Ukraine and Southern Borders Act (which abbreviates conveniently if nonsensically to "USB," perhaps because everybody wants more of those), wouldn't necessarily delay military aid to Ukraine, but would instead require that if the US deploys troops to support Ukraine, then the US would have to deploy "at least equal numbers of members of the Armed Forces to Southern Border of United States" [sic]. The four-paragraph bill is at least concise, specifying that

the number of members of the Armed Forces who are deployed by reason of the situation in Ukraine does not exceed the number of members of the Armed Forces who are deployed to the Southern Border of the United States.

At the time Cawthorn introduced the bill on February 9, President Joe Biden had already specified that no US forces would actually engage in fighting, so presumably the bill, if passed, would require that 14,000 troops be sent to the US-Mexico border to equal the number sent to NATO countries in advance of the Russian invasion. That deployment would of course have to be increased if additional US forces go to Europe in the coming days.

Having 14,000 troops standing around on the border seems like a really smart use of forces during an international crisis, although because of the Posse Comitatus Act, they would not actually be able to directly enforce immigration laws.

In a February 9 press release, Cawthorn insisted that

The United States should be focused on our own borders, not the borders of nations around the world. If Joe Biden truly cared about the wellbeing of Americans, he would prioritize the United States’ national security over the affairs of nations around the world.

Cawthorn also said he didn't want "American soldiers in Ukraine or Russia," which suggests he wasn't paying attention to actual US policy, and explained that if we did, sending exactly the same number of troops to the southern border is "the very least we can do to secure our own nation." We're not so sure — it sounds to us like overkill, and since the troops wouldn't be allowed to shoot asylum-seeking families on sight, it probably wouldn't even satisfy Fox News viewers.

When Russia actually invaded Ukraine, Rosendale issued a press release that didn't bother condemning it, but did condemn "war hawks" calling to "spill American blood and treasure in this conflict," which in fact virtually no one has called for. He also helpfully insisted yet again that the real problem is the "invasion" of the US by undocumented migrants. And then he retweeted that article about his great idea yesterday, so nothing seems to have changed.

For Cawthorn's part, he's shifted to saying at CPAC last week that "the days of endless wars and sending our sons and daughters overseas to die across the sea for other nations, those days are gone," because he's just lying about the US response to Ukraine. But he's also lying on social media by posting graphic photos of injured civilians and proclaiming "THIS IS JOE BIDEN'S FAULT."

Last week, when the invasion began, Cawthorn helpfully tweeted that "This would have never happened if President Trump were in the White House right now," and on his official Twitter account, explained that "Putin’s invasion of Ukraine is wholly unjustified and dangerous," but added that the US "should NOT lurch to war" because "Our military does not belong to the world."

In another inspiring tweet, Cawthorn promoted national unity by calling on Americans to "Pray for the people of Ukraine; their country is under attack" and also to "Pray for the United States; we have no leader in the White House." So that's very patriotic and godly of him. He too retweeted the GovTrack blog piece, although without any additional comment.

We looked for any comment from Ukrainians on the two great Americans' bills demanding that any US help be contingent on punishing brown people, but it would seem they were all too busy seeking shelter from the continued deadly shelling of their cities or burying family members killed in the bombing of apartment complexes.

[GovTrack Insider / Reuters / Al Jazeera / Rep. Matt Rosendale / / New York / Hill Reporter / BBC]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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