While blasting the U.S. government’s out-of-control spending on the Ukraine war, Trump argued that the European Union should be paying “a lot more money” to subsidize the war — as “geography” shows that “they’re a little bit more affected than we are.”
His comments were prompted by a question from a Saint Anselm’s College student who asked if he supports the Biden administration’s decisions to continue sending military equipment to Ukraine.
“Here’s the thing — have to say it to start off, no longer matters — if I were president, this would have never happened, and even the Democrats admit that,” Trump responded. “Putin knew it would have never happened, and his pipeline would have never happened. A lot of things would never have happened … and all those dead people, both Russian and Ukrainian, they wouldn’t be dead today. And all those cities that are blown up and disintegrated right to the ground, that wouldn’t have happened.”
“Now, here’s the problem, we’ve given so far $171 billion,” he continued. “They’ve given — they meaning [the] European Union, which is approximately the same size altogether as our economy — they’ve given about $20 [billion]. So we’re at $170 and they’re at $20, you don’t have to know too much about history … or geography to realize they’re a little bit more affected than we are … so they’ve got to put up a lot more money because they’re taking advantage of us just like every other country did.”
CNN moderator Kaitlan Collins pressed Trump on the question, asking him if he would continue the current practice of supporting Ukraine with money and weapons if elected.
Trump stated that he would instead meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and would “have that war settled in one day — 24 hours.”
Collins attempted to get Trump to express support for Russia, questioning him about who he wants to win the war — but Trump refused to fall for it, stating: “I don’t think in terms of winning and losing. I think in terms of getting it settled, so we stop killing all these people.”
“I want everyone to stop dying,” he added. “They’re dying, Russians and Ukrainians. I want them to stop dying. And I’ll have that done … in 24 hours, I’ll have it done. You need the power of the presidency to do it.”
The CNN moderator continued to push the Russia angle, asking Trump if he believes that Putin is a war criminal — but Trump once again refused to follow the left’s narrative, instead pointing out that to do so would make it more difficult to negotiate.
“If you say he’s a war criminal, it’s going to be a lot tougher to make a deal to get this thing stopped because if he’s going to be a war criminal where people are going to grab him and execute him, he’s going fight a lot harder than under the other circumstance,” he responded.
“That’s something to be discussed at a later date. Right now, we want to get that war settled,” Trump emphasized.