Trump refused to stand up to Putin during press conference
President Trump and Russian president Vladimir Putin held a joint press conference today after a one-on-one meeting between the two leaders. The result? A press conference being called “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory.”
By a Republican senator.
Senator John McCain (R-AZ) released a statement shortly after the press conference ended. In it, he denounces Trump and all but calls him a traitor to the American people. “The damage inflicted by President Trump’s naivete, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is difficult to calculate,” he says. “But it is clear that the summit in Helsinki was a tragic mistake.”
McCain says, “President Trump proved not only unable, but unwilling to stand up to Putin. He and Putin seemed to be speaking from the same script as the president made a conscious choice to defend a tyrant against the fair questions of a free press, and to grant Putin an uncontested platform to spew propaganda and lies to the world.”
McCain had frank words for Trump’s manner toward a dangerous man who most acknowledge to be a cruel and ruthless dictator. “These were the deliberate choices of a president who seems determined to realize his delusions of a warm relationship with Putin’s regime without any regard for the true nature of his rule, his violent disregard for the sovereignty of his neighbors, his complicity in the slaughter of the Syrian people, his violation of international treaties, and his assault on democratic institutions throughout the world.”
He wraps his statement with a harsh rebuke for Trump. “No prior president has ever abased himself more abjectly before a tyrant. Not only did President Trump fail to speak the truth about an adversary; but speaking for America to the world, our president failed to defend all that makes us who we are—a republic of free people dedicated to the cause of liberty at home and abroad. American presidents must be the champions of that cause if it is to succeed.”
McCain was far from the only American to condemn Trump’s behavior toward Putin, whom he refused to criticize for what our intelligence agencies are calling a concerted effort to interfere with and possibly alter the results of the 2016 presidential election. In advance of today’s summit with Putin, Trump said in regard to Russia’s tampering with our election, “All I can do is say, ‘Did you?’ And, ‘Don’t do it again.’ But he may deny it.” And now, social media is blowing up with politicians and citizens alike who are simply aghast at Trump’s behavior.
"You have been watching perhaps one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president at a summit in front of a Russian leader certainly than I've ever seen." – Anderson Cooper on Trump-Putin summit pic.twitter.com/xHbmAZl0y3
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) July 16, 2018
Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of “high crimes & misdemeanors.” It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???
— John O. Brennan (@JohnBrennan) July 16, 2018
I don't wanna get through to him. I wanna be through with him. https://t.co/uQhfe1ygcL
— Dennis DiClaudio (@dennisdiclaudio) July 16, 2018
— Jon Cooper (@joncoopertweets) July 16, 2018
Never, NEVER, use the word patriots to describe yourselves.
Not after your surrender to Russia's brazen cyberattack, your COMPLICITY, your assault on the FBI and on our intel community.
— Peter Daou (@peterdaou) July 16, 2018
On 9/11, we were attacked by our enemy. Today, America was attacked by its president.#treasonSummit
— David Hoffman (@atDavidHoffman) July 16, 2018
Today, July 16th, 2018, a date which will live in infamy, the United States of America was suddenly & deliberately attacked & betrayed by our "President". We will gain the inevitable triumph, so help us all true patriots.#TreasonSummit #PresidentAsset https://t.co/5hbQUZxJA0
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) July 16, 2018
This shows the fall of the Ruble since sanctions began for Russia's attack on Crimea.
Trump is deeply indebted to Russian oligarchs.
It's up to us. Tell Congress that sanctions cannot be lifted on a country that attacked our Democracy.
— Nick Jack Pappas (@Pappiness) July 16, 2018
When the Russian Foreign Ministry tweets its agreement to an America president publicly attacking and blaming his own country. I feel like I’m in the twilight zone! #treasonsummit pic.twitter.com/Wud2m6M3am
— Charles M. Blow (@CharlesMBlow) July 16, 2018
In the entire history of our country, Americans have never seen a president of the United States support an American adversary the way @realDonaldTrump has supported President Putin.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) July 16, 2018
Trump flattered Putin who attacked our democracy and insulted the brave men and women of our Intelligence Community. It is disgraceful.https://t.co/4qJsLXakpM
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) July 16, 2018
Putin DOES NOT DENY that he has compromising material on Trump. He merely says that Putin didn't know Trump was in Moscow.
— Emily C. Singer (@CahnEmily) July 16, 2018
President Trump’s press conference with Putin was an embarrassing spectacle. Rather than make clear that interference in our elections is unacceptable, Trump instead accepted Putin’s denials and cast doubt on the conclusions of our intelligence community. This is not normal.
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) July 16, 2018
This is the United States president just 3 days after we indicted 12 more Russians for attacking America. Not a peep about that or the election hack. Just more ass-kissing. I’d say “unbelievable” but it’s actually quite expected. #impeach #Trump #traitor @POTUS #Helsinki https://t.co/C6GoZq74iP
— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) July 16, 2018
Keep in mind that Trump refused to stand up to Putin or condemn him in any way just days after Robert Mueller indicted 12 Russian spies for their efforts at tampering with our election in 2016. Even Fox News, notorious for being a Trump/GOP propaganda machine, came out against the president’s performance at the press conference.
It’s hard to know where America even goes from here. With Republicans refusing to impeach Trump or speak out against his traitorous actions, we’re left wondering what happens next. In the meantime, we go to sleep at night knowing that this is how the leader of the free world thinks.
Question: Do you hold Russia accountable for anything?
President Trump: “I hold both countries responsible…I think we’re all to blame."
— Matt Viser (@mviser) July 16, 2018