US expert: Midterm elections may force Biden to focus on domestic issues

A US expert says that as the November midterm elections approach, President Joe Biden's administration may shift its focus from Ukraine to domestic issues that are at the top of American people's minds.

Paul Sracic, a professor specializing in US politics at Youngstown State University in Ohio, spoke to NHK in an interview.

With June 24 marking four months since Russia invaded Ukraine, Sracic pointed out that "the interest in the issue is fading a bit in the United States." He cited that the conflict has continued longer than Americans expected and the US does not have troops on the ground in Ukraine. He indicated that over time, people are distracted by domestic issues like inflation.

Sracic said the Biden administration is trying to connect inflation and other economic problems with the war in Ukraine by blaming Russia for rising gas prices.

The professor said, "I think you're going to see more of a focus on domestic issues, particularly as we move towards the elections." He noted that approval ratings of the Biden administration are low, although midterm elections are less than five months away.

Sracic also said the shifting focus could make it difficult for the US to continue sending as much money in aid to Ukraine as it has done.

The US has decided to provide 40 billion dollars in new aid for Ukraine. The professor said some Congressional candidates, particularly Republicans, are questioning this use of money, as they argue that the US has "needs at home."

Sracic suggested that the question is how willing the US is going to be to continue spending money to provide the weapons that Ukraine desperately needs.