Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis criticized American aid to Ukraine as an "open-ended blank check" and questioned whether the United States should be engaged in the Russian conflict at all.
"I don't think it's in our interest to be getting into a proxy war with China, getting involved over things like the borderlands or over Crimea," DeSantis told Fox & Friends on Monday, referring to the Ukraine territories that Russia has seized through military force.
The remarks, made on the occasion of Biden's surprise visit to Kyiv, Ukraine, were some of DeSantis' most direct comments about the US involvement in the war since the conflict started a year ago.
Asked "what a win looks like" for the US, DeSantis downplayed Moscow's military actions to date and said Russia was "really wounded" and had suffered "tremendous, tremendous loses" without acknowledging the role that US weapons, military intelligence and aid have played in shaping the conflict.
DeSantis insisted Russia is not a threat "on the same level as China."
"The fear of Russia going into NATO countries and all that, and steamrolling, that has not even come close to happening," DeSantis said. "I think they have shown themselves to be a third-rate military power."