You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Illinois’ Washington delegation overwhelmingly denounces Putin’s invasion of Ukraine — with the exception of Republican U.S. Rep. Mary Miller

Chicago Tribune logo Chicago Tribune 2/24/2022 Rick Pearson, Chicago Tribune
U.S. Rep. Mary Miller (15th) speaks at Republican Day on the Director's Lawn at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield, Aug. 19, 2021. © E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune/TNS U.S. Rep. Mary Miller (15th) speaks at Republican Day on the Director's Lawn at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield, Aug. 19, 2021.

Members of both parties in Illinois’ congressional delegation on Thursday overwhelmingly denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine — with one notable exception.

Freshman U.S. Rep. Mary Miller, a Republican who has embraced the far-right elements of the national GOP and is backed for reelection by former President Donald Trump, issued a statement that neither condemned Putin’s actions nor backed U.S.-led sanctions to his regime.

Instead, she praised Trump for using a “peace through strength” strategy and achieving energy independence during his tenure in the White House as she delivered a litany of what she considered national security failures of Democratic President Joe Biden “and radical leftists in Congress.” She also warned that “gas prices are about to skyrocket even higher.”

“None of this would be happening if President Trump was still in the White House,” Miller’s statement concluded. “I will continue to pray that God watches over the people of Ukraine.”

Miller’s statement was in stark contrast to the reactions from the rest of the delegation, including the four other Illinois Republicans in the House.

Miller, of Downstate Oakland, is seeking a second term against five-term Republican U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis of Taylorville in the June 28 primary in the redrawn 13th congressional district.

Davis issued a strong denunciation of Putin’s actions and backed a strong U.S. response.

On Twitter, Davis said he joined “the free world in strongly condemning Russia’s unprovoked invasion,” and added that the “Ukrainian people need our prayers and they need our support through tough sanctions on Russia.”

“Thugs like Putin only respond to strength. Now is the time for severe economic consequences,” Davis tweeted.

Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Bost of Murphysboro also took to Twitter, saying Putin’s invasion “must be met with decisive action from the U.S. & our global partners.”


Video: Biden pushes economic agenda in Wisconsin after State of the Union (NBC News)

UP NEXT
UP NEXT

“We must send the message that we stand firm with the Ukrainian people and on the side of peace,” Bost tweeted. “The world is watching.”

Republican U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood of Peoria, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said he condemned Putin’s “unprovoked and unjustified attacks against Ukraine in the strongest possible terms.”

“The world is witness again to the true evil of Putin, who alone has chosen a path of bloodshed in Ukraine,” he said in a statement. “America and the free world must stand with Ukraine by enacting the strongest possible economic sanctions, crippling Russia’s ability to make war and punishing Putin’s regime and his oligarchs on the international stage.”

Retiring Republican U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Channahon, an outspoken critic of Trump and the former president’s dealings with Putin, said on Twitter that the Russian president once again showed himself for who he really is.

“From poisoning countless political opponents & his assassination of (liberal Russian politician Boris) Nemtsov, to the brutal air strikes murdering thousands of Syrian citizens, we have seen who Putin is & the impunity of his barbaric attacks on the world. He must be held accountable,” Kinzinger tweeted.

The state’s 13 House and two Senate Democrats were unified in their criticism of Putin and backed a strong response from Biden.

Sign up for The Spin to get the top stories in politics delivered to your inbox weekday afternoons.

North Side and northwest suburban Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley, a House Intelligence Committee member and co-chair of the Congressional Ukraine Caucus, said, “Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine begins a war of choice entirely of President Putin’s making, despite months of intense diplomacy. The price that Ukrainians will pay for that choice is unfathomable.”

“As I have for months, I will continue to call for appropriate repercussions for Russia’s invasion, and if necessary, I will press the administration and our allies to take broader, harsher action,” Quigley said in a statement.

Dick Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the U.S. Senate and the state’s senior senator, said Putin’s actions were “a dire threat to the established international order and must be resolutely deterred.”

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, a combat veteran, said any blood spilled and human suffering caused by the invasion rest solely on Putin’s hands.

“Our nation, our NATO allies and all countries who value human rights, sovereignty and the rule of law must hold him and his cronies fully, painfully and immediately accountable,” she said.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Bill Foster of Naperville noted in a statement that while the U.S. has no treaty-level obligation to defend Ukraine, “we have a special moral duty to assist Ukraine because of its decision to give up its nuclear weapons at the end of the Cold War in return for international assurances of its territorial integrity.”

“The people of Illinois stand on the side of democracy,” he said, “and with the people of Ukraine.”

rap30@aol.com

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon