Lankford, Inhofe back Trump's call for NATO spending

Senators Jim Inhofe and James Lankford speak after being briefed on the Northwest Oklahoma Complex fires. (KOKH/Anthony West)

Oklahoma's Senators are backing the President's call for allies to increase defense spending, while also showing support for an organization he has frequently ridiculed.

Senators James Lankford and Jim Inhofe joined a bipartisan group of their colleagues introducing a resolution to reinforce the need for greater defense spending in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. The move comes as President Donald Trump travels to Belgium to attend the NATO summit.

“Only fair and equitable burden sharing will make ‘peace through strength’ a NATO reality in the face of growing threats, including Russian aggression, terrorism and cybersecurity,” said Inhofe. “President Trump is right to strongly encourage all of our NATO allies to meet their commitment to defense spending under the collective security obligations.”

Trump has frequently criticized NATO allies and member nations for not meeting their spending obligations and has mused the future of the United States' role in the group. However the same resolution stresses the importance of the U.S. alliance with its NATO partners.

The resolution reads that the Senate "reaffirms the commitment of the United States to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as the foundation of transatlantic security and defense."

“The importance of NATO to the national security of the United States cannot be understated,” said Lankford. “Most NATO countries are in Europe, a continent that is at the frontlines of the confrontation with Russia and continues to deal with the large influx of refugees from crisis-torn areas. Europe’s security is important for America’s security; however, our allies must also meet their defense spending commitments. For the NATO Alliance to be most effective, all Member States must carry their share of the security burden.”

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