Senator Ernst’s Personal Connection to Helping Ukraine

Farm state leaders are watching closely for developments in Ukraine as the full impacts to global agriculture remain to be seen. Senator Joni Ernst feels a personal connection to the struggle.

“This really hits home for me, not only because I am a veteran, but that I also was on an agricultural exchange in Ukraine in 1989. While it was still part of the Soviet Union, so I knew at that time, the Ukrainians expressed their desire to be a free country, and they still want that day.”

Ernst says she is concerned about instability in Europe.

“It is affecting not only Ukraine with the horrible atrocities that are ongoing there, but it is also affecting the stability of markets within NATO, our European NATO partners, there is a huge influx of refugees that are leaving Ukraine and entering into any other countries, and a lot of them may be agricultural workers that certainly all of those countries rely on ag products.”

She says the administration should have been more proactive with sanctions on Russia.

“We can’t go back and change that now, but what we can do going forward is make sure that there is extreme pressure on Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, his oligarch cronies as well as his energy sector. So, we need to cut off the funding sources that are going into this war machine that is ravaging Ukraine right now.”

One of her constituents, an Iowa corn farmer, is currently in Ukraine dealing with the effects of the situation.

“This hog operation in Ukraine that he supports with corn sales has been bombed. And it’s like why, you know, so I think the Russians are that not only are they indiscriminately bombing, but I think they’re hitting ag areas too because it’s a food source., but he said, he’s, he’s fine. He’s going to stay there. He feels like that’s where he needs to be.”

Her staff is keeping track of his situation to offer assistance if he has trouble coming home to Iowa.


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