Russia engaged in its planned invasion of Ukraine late Wednesday night and into Thursday morning, deploying airstrikes in key cities such as Kyiv, Kharkiv, and Odesa, attracting wide condemnation from Florida’s top leaders.
Russia’s military action is expected to bring ripple effects to the American, and more specifically, Floridian economy. Barrels of crude oil have already exceeded $105, according to Senator Marco Rubio, who has provided minute-to-minute live updates of the proliferating escalation. Rubio claims that the cost of everyday items will rise as a result of the newfound war in Europe, explaining that Ukraine is a chief exporting nation of wheat and corn, staples of many domestic American food products.
“If Russia blocks their [Ukraine’s] Black Sea ports and cuts that off, you’re going to see a global disruption in the supply in the production of corn and wheat by as much as 12 to 13 percent, and that means the countries that are buying from Ukraine now are going to become our competitors as we try to buy these things, raising the price for everybody,” said Rubio. “This means that you could see food prices in America, which are already out of control rise by another 2 to 4 percent.
Amid an ongoing semiconductor shortage, a component used in many American products like computers, cars, and military systems, a Ukrainian blockade would further the current scarcity of the chips. Ukraine provides 90 percent of the neon and 35 percent of the palladium that domestic manufacturers use to produce semiconductors. Without access to these 2 elements, the shortage that was expected to endure throughout 2022 could stretch through the coming 3 years.
Nationally, the Dow Jones stock exchange is down nearly 700 points as of Thursday morning.
Here is how Florida’s leaders have responded:
Senator Marco Rubio:
“To clarify what is underway is a full scale & comprehensive military assault throughout #Ukraine Airborne & amphibious landings,missile strikes from air,ground & naval forces, electronic & cyber attacks & a large ground force to occupy a large swath of territory. He [Putin] knows that if he does this big move, this is going to increase oil prices to $110 or $115 dollars for some period of time. This is going to be massive destruction to the global economy, and let me tell you what that translates to: a gallon of regular gas in America of $4.01. It’s already high and it can get that high.”
House Speaker Chris Sprowls:
“Violence was chosen over the peace of the political process. Let us not forget the blessing we have to address our differences without malice.”
Senator Rick Scott:
“Freedom is under attack in Ukraine. Pray for the innocent lives in danger.”
Senate Minority Leader Lauren Book:
“Praying for the innocent people of Ukraine. Praying for peace.”
Agricultural Commissioner Nikki Fried:
“This morning, we woke to a different reality. Watching Russia’s unprovoked invasion of a free and democratic Ukraine, shattering decades-long peace in Europe. We must send a strong message that we will not allow aggression against democracy anywhere.”
Representative Stephanie Murphy:
“Imposing massive sanctions on Russia and arming Ukraine is just the start. The U.S. and our allies should make Russia a global pariah, suspend its membership in key international organizations, and relocate international sports/cultural events Russia planned to host.”
Florida GOP [via Carlos A. Gimenez]:
“Almost 12 hours since Vladimir Putin declared war on Ukraine and the only response we’ve gotten from Biden is a Zoom call. Where’s Biden? He’s the leader of the free world. It’s time to start acting like it.”