Unlike the Democrats, the Republicans have already begun a series of debates between potential party candidates that precede to the primaries. Two such events took place in early August, - in New Hampshire and Ohio - where the leaders of the ‘elephants’ competed in the criticism of the Obama administration, Democrats and their own fellow party members.
One of the biggest surprises of this election campaign for the Republicans became the nomination of controversial Donald Trump and rapid rise of his support, fixed by polls in July and August. After a few provocative statements against migrants, John McCain, and in support of Vladimir Putin, Trump induces rejection among the Republican establishment and has little chance to win the primaries. He has already announced readiness to go as an independent candidate.
What about mentioned candidates’ statements regarding Ukraine and Russia, both of them are strong supporters of active counteraction to Russia’s aggressive policy - quite in the spirit of their party. Thus, Rubio accuses Russia in overturning ‘the post-World War II order in Europe’ and calls ‘to strengthen Ukraine and rollback Russian aggression’. Concerning Russia, ‘forward-looking agenda for its own future’ is needed, senator underlines. Bush states about ‘fecklessness’ of Obama’s administration’s failure to arm Ukrainian government, which faces Russian aggression.
The issue of foreign policy is one of the central in course of the 2016 presidential campaign, and it promises to give a lot of stumbling blocks - along with domestic political issues of immigration and medical care. However, it need to be understood that the ‘Ukrainian question’ do not possess a priority, giving in the ISIS problem and terrorism in general, ongoing destabilization in Syria and Iraq, gradual rapprochement with Iran and Cuba, and uneasy relations with China.
Thus, at present, the most influential Republican candidates, apart from Trump, occupy the traditional position of ‘GOP’, loyal to Kyiv as a counterweight to Moscow. The main target of criticism for them is Hillary Clinton, one of the most influential Democratic candidates at the moment. Taking into consideration her experience as the Secretary of State, Clinton is sensitive to criticism regarding foreign policy. Despite her harsh statements regarding Putin, Republicans argue that Clinton’s policies in case she wins will not differ from the current ‘weak and indecisive course’ and it will become ‘Obama’s third term’.
Anton Pechenkin specially for 112.International