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Former Vice President Mike Pence said that he does not think former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis grasp the United States' national interest in aiding Ukraine's effort to oppose Russia's invasion of the country, according to the Associated Press
"With all due respect, I think the former president and the governor of Florida just don't understand Americans' national interest in supporting the Ukrainian military in repelling the Russian military in Ukraine," Pence said, according to the AP. "Make no mistake, China is watching."
Trump currently holds a wide lead over the pack of Republican presidential primary candidates while DeSantis is trailing in a distant second place.
Pence, who served as vice president during Trump's White House tenure, announced a presidential bid last month.
The U.S. has approved billions worth of aid to assist the embattled nation of Ukraine, but many Americans oppose lavishing aid on the foreign nation.
"I think we need to stand firm, stand strong," Pence opined, according to the AP. "I'm going to do that, while others may be giving way to a more populist sentiment."
The former vice president, who recently traveled to Ukraine, said that "if we don't give the Ukrainian military what they need to defeat and repel the Russian invasion, I'm convinced that the second half of the 21st century will look a great deal more like the first half of the 20th century."
Pence has said it would not be in America's interests to dispatch U.S. forces to Ukraine and that he would "never support" such a move. But he thinks that if Russian President Vladimir Putin conquers Ukraine, he will eventually send troops to breach the border of another nation, triggering a NATO issue that would require the U.S. to send troops.
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Alex Nitzberg is a staff writer for Blaze News.