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Claytoonz: Mr. Zelensky goes to Washington

As Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky virtually addressed Congress today, I wondered, “What did they do with Lauren Boebert, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Matt Gaetz, Louie Gohmert, and Madison Cawthorn? For that matter, how dare any member of the Republican Party attend who had refused to impeach Donald Trump for his attempt to extort the Ukrainian president.

During President Biden’s State of the Union address to Congress, Lauren Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene heckled and cackled like mean girls throughout his speech. In order not to risk further embarrassment to his party, or even worse, the nation, did Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy lock them in the congressional basement? There’s no real reason for the most ridiculous members of Congress to attend anyway since none of them have ever expressed any interest in doing their jobs. Did Marco Rubio tweet a selfie with Zelensky on the monitor behind him to show he’s not a ridiculous individual?

Did pro-Russian flunkies Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes attend? Maybe Vladimir Putin could have given the Republican response.

The Republican Party refused to punish Donald Trump for the crime of trying to extort a foreign president, which he did by withholding military aid funded by Congress until Zelensky gave him the political dirt he wanted. This was aid intended to protect Ukraine from a Russian invasion. This was a crime yet the entire Republican Party refused to take it seriously and instead, made excuses for their corrupt leader. It’s illegal for a political campaign to receive donations from a foreigner, especially a foreign government.

Republicans are still claiming it’s a hoax that Russia helped Donald Trump, yet there’s a recording they ignore of him explicitly asking a foreign government to dig up dirt on a political opponent.

Now, the same goons who were OK with Trump’s extortion attempt are all wearing stern and serious-looking faces while they talk about creating a no-fly zone over Ukraine and other means to support that nation. They should have taken it seriously when Trump used military aid to grift Volodymyr Zelensky instead of wasting the past two years repeating Rudy Giuliani’s ridiculous crap about Hunter Biden and his laptop. Hey, why doesn’t Rudy go to Ukraine now to continue his investigation into Hunter Biden? No? Why not?

President Zelensky thanked the U.S. for its assistance but pleaded for more. He compared Russia’s assault on the Ukrainian people to the attack on Pearl Harbor and said it was like a daily 9/11. He played a graphic video of Russia’s assault on the Ukrainian civilian population, including the attacks on children.

Yesterday, President Biden signed into law a bill that includes $13.6 billion for assistance to Ukraine. After Zelensky’s speech, he announced an additional $800 million to support Ukraine’s defense against Russia.

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As much as we would like to help Ukraine, we still can’t get involved in the fighting. A military conflict between the United States and Russia, as inept of a military as they are, will widen the war into a much larger conflict that would involve even more nations. A war between the U.S. and Russia could eventually lead to nuclear warfare as Vladimir Putin may be unstable. Do you want to play a game? A no-fly zone over Ukraine enforced by NATO takes us from hyperboles about World War III to a very real possibility of U.S. and NATO jets shooting down Russian jets.

The Republican Party didn’t just allow Donald Trump to extort the president of Ukraine. They sat back and watched him try to destroy NATO. If the Republicans had their way, there wouldn’t be a NATO today preventing Putin from extending his war beyond Ukraine.

The GOP is best at being the Party of No, giving empty criticism, creating lies, heckling, taking selfies while giving out classified information, and spreading conspiracy theories. Let’s let the adults figure out how best to help Ukraine.

Music Note: I listened to an alt-rock station on my music streamer while drawing this.

Clay Jones is the 2022 recipient of the RFK Human Rights Journalism Award in Editorial Cartooning, and won a 2021 Sigma Delta Chi Award for Excellence in Journalism from the Society of Professional Journalists. He was a finalist for the Herblock Prize in 2019 and a finalist for the National Headliner Award in 2020. See more award-winning editorial cartoons from him at Claytoonz.com.

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