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'A moment of peril': Senator Johnson talks about Ukraine crisis and rising gas prices

TMJ4's Chief Political Reporter Charles Benson asks if the US could be doing more on both fronts.
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Posted at 4:36 PM, Mar 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-14 19:32:31-04

Russia's unprovoked attack on Ukraine is partly to blame for rising gas prices, but Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson says it's not the only reason.

Johnson and his Republican colleagues have also called on President Biden and NATO allies to expedite more military equipment for Ukraine.

"We are at a moment of peril," said Senator Johnson, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

The Wisconsin Republican believes the Ukrainian people need and deserve all the help they can get to stop Russia and Vladimir Putin.

"His (Putin) back is up against the wall, this is not going as planned," said Johnson. "I think freedom loving people need to support other freedom loving people and the West should be providing Ukraine with the munitions (and) the weaponry they need to defend themselves and defend their freedom."

TMJ4's Chief Political Reporter Charles Benson asks, "Should we be enforcing a no fly zone?"

Sen. Johnson responded, "Well, again, we want to avoid the situation where NATO members are directly engaging Russia."

As for rising gas prices, Johnson supports President Joe Biden's ban on Russian oil, the world's number three producer of oil behind the US and Saudi Arabia, but not his efforts to reduce fossil fuels by canceling the Keystone XL pipeline.

"We need to recognize that we're a fossil fuel based economy," said Johnson. "We also have to recognize the reality that a lot of these renewable energies are not ready for prime time they simply can't supply the energy we need to power the US economy. If we rely on them, prices are going to skyrocket, which is what we're seeing right now."

Democrats, including Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, are pushing for Congress to postpone the 18.4 cents a gallon federal gas tax to lower prices.

Benson asked, "If you had to take a vote today on postponing or putting on hold the federal gas tax, your vote would be?"

Sen. Johnson responded, "I'm generally supportive of returning Wisconsinites hard earned tax money in any way, shape or form that I can. I think this would be a short sighted way of doing it, but if this is the only thing that is offered to provide relief to Wisconsin families, I'd probably be supportive of it."

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