While the next presidential election is still more than 21 months away, Ohio Republican Sen. J.D. Vance recently made clear who he will be voting for.
In an opinion piece published by the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday, the freshmen lawmaker gave his full-throated endorsement to former President Donald Trump.
Vance contrasts Trump’s foreign policy record with that of predecessors
Vance began by touting Trump’s domestic policy achievements, such as his 2017 tax cut as well as the former president’s efforts at regulatory reform.
However, he argued that “perhaps the most important part of Mr. Trump’s legacy” was his foreign policy record, something Vance says that “neither party acknowledges.”
“My entire adult lifetime has been shaped by presidents who threw America into unwise wars and failed to win them,” the conservative senator complained.
“I had just started high school when George W. Bush was elected president, and his presidency is the first I remember with any detail,” he recalled.
Former president avoided war while bringing enemies together
“Mr. Bush allowed a just war in Afghanistan to turn into a nation-building quagmire and then started an unjust war in Iraq,” Vance continued.
“His successor, Barack Obama, doubled down on nation building in Afghanistan and launched a new war of his own in Libya, with the enthusiastic support of then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton,” the Republican lawmaker pointed out.
However, Vance stressed that Trump “started no wars despite enormous pressure from his own party and even members of his own administration.”
Yet the author noted how Trump “did more than simply keep the peace” by also managing to negotiate the Abraham Accords, an agreement between Israel and a collection of Arab countries who oppose Iran.
Vance values achievements over “verbal restraint”
What’s more, the former president “began the long, slow process of decoupling the U.S. from its economic reliance on China.”
While Vance acknowledged that is “fair enough” for Trump’s critics to say he lacks “verbal restraint,” the author contended that such concerns are misplaced.
“For many, statesmanship means having a polite social-media presence and throwing out slogans about ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’ while starting world-historic catastrophes in the Middle East,” Vance wrote.
“I prefer a different kind of statesmanship: one that stands athwart the crowd, reminding leaders in both parties that the U.S. national interest must be pursued ruthlessly but also carefully, with strong words but great restraint,” he said.