JD Vance Fresh Off His GOP Primary Victory in Ohio

16 May 2022

BUCK: We’ve got JD Vance on the line now. JD just won his primary for Senate in Ohio. He’s also the author of Hillbilly Elegy. JD, appreciate you coming back on.

VANCE: Yeah, great to be with you guys.

BUCK: First off, congrats on that primary win. We know you’re up against Tim Ryan from the Democrat side here. One thing that both Joe Biden and Tim Ryan often use as a talking point, a trope is how much they care about “the working folks” and “the union folks” and how much they’re gonna help people put food on the table. Well, certainly this Biden administration, when there are baby formula shortages can’t claim that it’s doing a good job in that respect. How do you see this playing out, given the realities here of an economy that not even mainstream Democrats are able to defend without seeming silly?

VANCE: Yeah. That’s basically it. We have to hang the Biden administration and their policy record around Tim Ryan’s neck and not let them run away from it. He’s funny he’s done a couple of interviews since becoming, you know, the general election candidate for the Democrats and they ask him, “Do you want Joe Biden to come in and campaign with you?” and he always says… He always kinds of stutters and says, “Well, you know, that’s kind of a distraction.”

‘Cause these guys know that if they have to run on what they’ve accomplished over the past few years, Republicans are gonna win in a landslide. You’re right, Tim Ryan does try to be the sort of workingman’s Democrat. He’s tries to pretend almost that he’s tough on China even though he opposed the Trump trade policies for years, that he’s onto pro-defund the police even though he was very supportive of those policies when he was running for president two short years ago. So it really is…

I mean, look. The guy’s been in office for 20 years, he’s been a complete failure, that failure has accelerated the last couple years. And if people in Ohio know that, then they’re not gonna elect this guy to a Senate term. That’s really our job, to make sure that they know what the Democrats stand for, they know what we’re gonna try to do for the state of Ohio when I get elected. And I think if they know these things, I’m gonna win very comfortably.

CLAY: First, congrats on winning the primary again from us as well, JD. And, second, it used to be the policy of the Democrat Party that abortion should be safe, legal, and rare. I think that was the phrase that Bill Clinton used. Your opponent went on Fox News and said he supports abortion all the way up to the ninth month of pregnancy. I know you’re a lawyer as well, and you’ve studied Roe v. Wade over the years as every lawyer would have to. How radical of a policy change is that the Democrats have now embraced and what does it say that Tim Ryan, who is claiming to be a moderate, is totally okay with Ohio moms having abortions in the ninth month of pregnancy?

VANCE: Well, it’s a really radical idea. Of course, it goes much, much further than Roe v. Wade, which, you know, for what it’s worth, I don’t think was a good decision. I hope it does get overturned. But look, people can agree to disagree. I’m a hundred percent pro-life. Maybe some people aren’t. But it’s one thing to be sort of pro-choice to s, “W we want it to be safe, legal, and rare,” and it’s another thing to go the direction the Democrats have where you see these videos of crazy people saying that they celebrate their abortions.

And that they want young women speak their abortions as if it’s something to be especially proud about, and that’s just such a radical departure from even where the Democrats were 15 years ago. I think that it suggests really the interest groups control the Democrat Party. It is not… You know, Tim Ryan, it’s not working, people. Maybe that was true 30 or 40 years ago but it’s certainly not true today, but look, they have to face the voters.

That’s the one good thing about their policy position is they have to go to the voters and try to persuade them that you should be able to abort a baby at 39 weeks old. Ninety-nine percent, I think, of people recognize that as heinous. Unfortunately, the Democrats are controlled by interest groups that think the opposite. But look, people are gonna know that about Tim Ryan — and I think when they do, they’re not gonna vote for ’em.

BUCK: Speaking to JD Vance. He just won the primary in Ohio running for Senate there and squaring off on a very important race coming into his Election Day. JD, there’s been less focus and coverage of the war in Ukraine in recent days, but some of us who — while hoping for the best to the Ukrainians but also having concerns about U.S. involvement exceeding what it already has been ,and additionally the $40 billion that now Biden wants to send them — are at least on alert at some level that now you have Sweden saying that it wants to join NATO and Finland saying that it wants to join NATO, and taking active steps to do so. How concerned are you that this is going to go further than even the Biden administration intends and that this could actually grow as a conflict?

VANCE: Oh, I’m pretty terrified. You know, I’ve been out in front of this even in the primary when it was maybe a little bit harder to ask the basic question, you know, what vital national interest is served by us escalating a war in Ukraine, especially when we’ve got our own border crisis and our own problems right here at home? That’s been my argument, and now I think that argument is even more relevant today. Look, Finland and Sweden, they’re their own countries. They have their own sovereignty.

But them joining NATO, which the U.S. would have to okay, would mean that we would be obligated to — defend them in a military conflict. And you have to ask yourself, does that actually serve the interests of American people? I’m sure both you sleep soundly at night know that the Finnish army would come to the defense of United States of America if they even have an army of any reputation or any experience. But these are people who have radically underinvested in their defense, in their own navy, in their own armies.

And now they want to join a military alliance which basically just puts the U.S. on the hook to defend their countries. Is that in our interests? I don’t see an argument for it, and I’d at least like to have that argument. Like, if we’re gonna spend $40 billion for Ukrainians, okay, fine. I would have voted “no” on it, but I’d at least like to have a debate about where is this money going? How does this serve the interests of the citizens of this country? That’s what’s really missing from this.

We’re all sort of letting emotions lead us into a very stupid set of decisions. Let me just take one example. Everybody supported fertilizer sanctions, you know, three, four months ago. Well, now the price of fertilizer has skyrocketed, Vladimir Putin makes more money off of fertilizer than he did before we implemented the sanctions, and who’s really suffering? American farmers who can’t afford to run their farms — and soon Americans who aren’t gonna have enough to eat because American farmers can’t run their farms. Like, this is what happens when you let emotions run your public policy instead of reason and national interest. We need to go back to the reason-and-national interest side of things.

CLAY: JD, I believe your wife was a Supreme Court clerk, which probably means you guys have spent a lot of time talking about how radical the leak was of the Justice Alito proposed opinion. But also a lot of discussion about the protests that are occurring outside of Supreme Court justice homes. The Senate recently voted to provide them more security. I don’t think the House has acted on that yet. How do you assess the overall leak, what it says about the Supreme Court, and what we’re seeing in terms of protests outside the homes of justices, many of whom have young children?

VANCE: Yeah. Well, it’s very disgusting, and I think it goes to show that the purpose of the leak was probably to trigger just this kind of harassment. That’s my… I don’t have any proof of that, but my strong view is they wanted to bully these guys into not undoing Roe v. Wade. I mean, look, this is something that happens in Third World countries. Baby formula shortages and protesting independent judiciary members because you don’t like the decisions that they’re gonna make.

This is a really dark thing. The fact that the leak happened, the fact that they’re now allowed to go to the justices’ house and protest. I mean, to state the obvious, it’s immoral, but it’s also illegal. And this is one of the things we’ve seen in the last few years in this country has been that if you have the right politics, if you’re doing what the left-wing media and the controllers of our bureaucracy want you to do, you’re kind of above the law.

But look, you’re not loud to go to Supreme Court injustices’ house and harass them into ruling the way that you want them to rule. It’s a fundamental assault on American justice and yet these people are allowed to do it because they have the politics that the people in power actually like.

BUCK: JD, Where should folks go if they want to follow your campaign, get involved?

VANCE: Yeah, JDVance.com. I will say we’re gonna have an army of money coming against us because the left hates me and they want me to lose this race. So if people are willing to go to JDVance.com — support us, volunteer for us — it means the world and will ensure that we actually win this seat come November.

CLAY: JD, one last question for you, by the way. Tucker Carlson — who I know you’ve been on his show a lot and he was your treatment in helping get your voice out — is getting criticized ’cause of the shooting in Buffalo and blamed for it. What do you think about that?

VANCE: Oh, I think it’s so vile. I mean, this is just exactly what happens in American politics, and it shows how politically motivated these people are. Look, Tucker’s a friend of mine. He’s not just a guy I go on a show. He isn’t a racist, he is not a bad person, and the idea that… First of all, the guy’s manifesto who committed this terrible, terrible crime, he didn’t mention Tucker — and even if he had, that would not mean Tucker Carlson is to claim pour some guy murdering a bunch of innocent people!

The fact that people are trying to use this for their political gain is ridiculous and I note that nobody pointed out that a black nationalist led to the slaughter of those people in Waukesha or was motivating… You know, that ideology appears to be motivating the guy who shot up the people in the New York subway. There’s this weird thing that the left does.

When the politics of a terrible tragic match with their worldview, they exploit it in this very dark and ugly way. At the end of the day the people who are responsible for killing those innocent people in Buffalo are the guys who pulled the trigger, and we have to get back to some measure of moral responsibility for the people who commit these heinous crimes, not talk show hosts who have nothing to do with it.

CLAY: Thanks, JD. Appreciate it. I’ll tell you to check out JDVance.com as well as that race will certainly be heated as we move into the fall.

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