Former President Donald Trump is reportedly discussing the possibility of withdrawing the United States from NATO if he’s elected president again. The notion is being blasted by Democrats and endorsed by one of Trump’s opponents for the Republican nomination.
What You Need To Know
- Former President Donald Trump is reportedly discussing the possibility of withdrawing the United States from NATO if he’s elected president again
- The notion is being blasted by Democrats and endorsed by one of Trump’s opponents for the Republican nomination
- The reelection campaign for President Joe Biden quickly attacked Trump over the report Monday, saying it would side with Russian President Vladimir Putin, undermine America's strength on the global stage and threaten national security
- But Vivek Ramaswamy, a biotech entrepreneur who is running for the Republican presidential nomination, told Politico that withdrawing from NATO is “a reasonable idea that I have considered"
Rolling Stone reported Monday that Trump has had private discussions about cutting ties with the transatlantic military alliance unless his demands are met.
While president, Trump was openly hostile toward NATO, most often criticizing member countries that fall short of meeting the alliance’s commitment of spending at least 2% of their gross domestic product on defense.
Trump then renewed his attacks against NATO last year after Russia invaded Ukraine, calling the alliance a “paper tiger.”
After reportedly being talked out of withdrawing from NATO by advisers in his last term, Trump, who has a commanding lead in the polls for the GOP nomination, has made clear that he does not want “NATO lovers” in his senior positions in his second administration, Rolling Stone reported. He and his campaign advisers have been discussing how to wind down American involvement so that the U.S. assumes only a “standby” position in the alliance, the report said.
Trump, however, has indicated he might not seek to remove the U.S. from NATO if other countries steeply increase their defense funding and there is a reevaluation of the alliance’s bedrock principle that “an armed attack against one or more [member nations] shall be considered an attack against them all.”
The Trump campaign did not respond to an email from Spectrum News on Tuesday.
The reelection campaign for President Joe Biden quickly attacked Trump over the report Monday.
“Donald Trump's threats to weaken NATO and side with [Russian President] Vladimir Putin undermine America’s strength on the global stage and threaten our national security,” campaign spokesman Ammar Moussa said in a statement. “As president, Donald Trump spent four years cozying up to dictators and making our country less safe. The idea that he would abandon our allies if he doesn't get his way underscores what we already know to be true about Donald Trump: The only person he cares about is himself. And, it’s exactly why Donald Trump shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near the Oval Office.”
Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., wrote in a post on X, formerly Twitter, that Trump’s reported plans are proof of why it’s important for the House to approve a bipartisan bill passed in the Senate earlier this year that would prevent any president from withdrawing the U.S. from NATO.
“Pulling out of NATO would be dangerous and reckless,” Kaine wrote. “America is stronger amongst our allies, and we need to get this signed into law.”
Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr., D-N.J., added, also on X: “The ruler of the republican party is plotting the destruction of the NATO alliance if he seizes power again as a gift to dictators of Russia and China.”
But Vivek Ramaswamy, a biotech entrepreneur who is running for the Republican presidential nomination, told Politico that withdrawing from NATO is “a reasonable idea that I have considered.”
Ramaswamy did not elaborate, despite questioning, on why he felt that way. He did, however, add, “I am also open to reevaluating U.S. involvement in the U.N.”
The Democratic National Committee wrote in an email to news outlets Tuesday that Republican presidential candidates “are falling in line” behind Trump “to out-MAGA each other on foreign policy even as the world — and especially our allies — look to the United States for strong and steady leadership.”