Missouri Republican Josh Hawley was the first senator in opposition to NATO’s addition of Sweden and Finland. He wrote an opinion piece stating that this would make it impossible for the U.S. to effectively fight China.
Sweden and Finland both announced in May that they would seek to join the 73-year-old defense organization in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. NATO officially invited both previously neutral countries into its alliance late June after Turkey had dropped objections to them joining. Biden’s administration promised “to send a very clear signal” to Russia if it attempts to block the countries joining. National security advisor Jake Sullivan stated that America “will not tolerate any aggression When it comes to Chinese Imperialism, Americans should be aware of the truth: The United States isn’t ready to resist it. “Expanding American security commitments to Europe would only make the problem worse–and America less secure,” Hawley stated Monday in The National Interest . The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 2022364-0 June to approve a resolution approving Sweden and Finland’s joining. Republican Kentucky Senator Rand Paul was also present.
Why I Won’t Vote to Add Sweden and Finland to NATO https://t.co/YPUvgYz8Xr
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) August 1, 2022
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 21-0 June 14 to support a resolution approving Sweden and Finland’s joining, with Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul voting “present.” Paul previously voted against North Macedonia’s entrance into NATO in 2019, a move Hawley supported. (RELATED: ‘Recipe For Disaster’: Rand Paul Defends Blocking Ukraine Military Aid Package, Takes Shot At John McCain)
Hawley referred to NATO guidelines that require member countries to contribute at least 2 percent to their defense spending. Sweden does not expect its defense spending to reach two percent of GDP until 2028, and Finland’s defense spending reached two percent for the first time in 2022. In the case of an imminent conflict in Europe U.S. forces will almost certainly be called to protect both countries,” Hawley stated. “U.S. The United States has limited resources. We already spend more than a trillion dollars per year in defense. And our manpower is already stretched thin across the globe.”