Elections in the US Signal Shift to Isolationism

With the Pro-Trump Contingency on the Rise, Aid to Ukraine Is In Danger

2 November 2022

Miles R. Maftean

Editorial Director, Visegrad Insight

As Republicans are poised to win in both congressional houses, American isolationism will hit the mainstream, leaving funding to Ukraine a lingering question.

With the global election season in full swing, the next on the docket will be the US midterm elections, slated to take place on 8 November. It is the first test for the American public to vote on the direction the country is heading just two years after former US President Trump was defeated. But the pro-MAGA contingency of the Republican party is in full force, continuing to create rifts in the GOP with its calls for isolationism, threatening the continued American funding and support of Ukraine if the GOP is victorious.

As projections show a clear victory for the GOP in the House – and a dead heat for the Senate – the possibility Republicans will win control of both houses when the clock strikes midnight on the 9 November is very likely. Yet, even if the GOP does win, American aid to Ukraine will not end. The issue will, however, become an unfortunate political battleground with heated partisan fights and intra-party factions becoming evermore divisive all the while being both instigated by and spurring on polarising and disinformation narratives. And even more alarming for Europe, this fight may further push the idea that America needs to change to a more isolationist foreign policy, fuelled by the pro-MAGA contingency and some on the progressive left.

With this shift comes a time for Europe to react strategically by increasing defence commitments and retaining a united front that declares support for Ukraine; otherwise, it will face increased vulnerability to its security architecture that is susceptible to external influences.

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Miles R. Maftean

Editorial Director, Visegrad Insight

A political theorist whose work examines the rise of political extremism and illiberal politics in Central and Eastern Europe. He has a Ph.D. from Central European University where he researched how democratic states respond to the current populist crisis of pluralist democracy.

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