Home Jennifer Lewis “will stand up for freedom” in spite of Ben Cline’s NATO vote

Jennifer Lewis “will stand up for freedom” in spite of Ben Cline’s NATO vote

Jennifer Lewis
Jennifer Lewis

WAYNESBORO — Jennifer Lewis is running for Congress in November’s election and calling out Congressman Ben Cline for his one of only 18 no votes against NATO membership taken on July 18.

“Cline joined 17 of his Republican friends in voting no — including such extremists as Madison Cawthorn, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert and Matt Gaetz. Cline rejected an opportunity to strengthen NATO and showed his loyalty to Vladmir Putin. He voted against democracy,” Lewis said in a press release.

Lewis “believes deeply in defending democracy and working with our NATO allies to stand up to tyranny,” the press release states. She supports the House’s 394 to 18 vote to express support “for the sovereign decision of Finland and Sweden to apply to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as well as calling on all members of NATO to ratify the protocols of accession swiftly.”

Cline’s rejection to strengthen NATO comes as the United States’ allies are rationing gas and Russia continues a war against Ukraine. “It seems Cline now supports Vladimir Putin and his goal to rebuild the Soviet Union that collapsed partly due to the tough stance President Regan took with his statement: ‘Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.’”

According to the press release, “Finland and Sweden applied for NATO membership in response to Russia’s brutal and murderous invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.” Allowing the memberships of both countries would strengthen “the alliance and send a powerful message of unity to deter further aggression by Vladimir Putin’s regime.”

President Joe Biden showed support for Sweden and Finland because of their democracies, and pledged “full, total and complete backing” of the United States.

“This is not Cline’s first anti-NATO vote. One of his first votes in Congress was against a bill to block then-president Trump from withdrawing the United States from the NATO alliance, as Trump had suggested doing. Cline was one of only 22 members of the House – all Republicans – to vote no,” the press release stated.

In April, Cline voted against a resolution expressing “unequivocal support” for NATO as an alliance founded on democratic principles. All Democrats and 143 of the 206 Republicans who voted approved the resolution.

“Putin’s war has destabilized the world economy and causes fuel and food costs to increase dynamically. Congressman Cline is willing to leave him go unchecked,” the press release stated. But, Lewis “will stand up for freedom.”

“These votes are a slap in the face to the veterans and active-duty service members Cline claims to support, who have worked closely with troops from other NATO countries in our common defense.”

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.