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politics putin russia Trump

‘Shameful’: Republicans Blast Trump, Fox News Calls Putin Press Conference ‘Disgusting’

"Thank you, Helsinki!"

Well, the reviews are in on Donald Trump’s rather astonishing performance in Helsinki and they are – how should we put this? – God awful.

To be clear, no one (including, by the way, Donald Trump) went into this expecting much. And Trump’s tweets hours ahead of the summit gave the world a preview of what to expect in terms of just how willing he would be to sell out the country by continuing to push the “witch hunt” narrative despite the fact that his own Justice Department indicted 12 Russian operatives for election interference just 72 hours prior.

Trump’s weekend tweets and those that emanated from his Twitter account on Monday, found the President railing against FBI conspiracies, shrieking about Hillary Clinton, decrying “fake news” and, in one particularly egregious post, reiterating the idea that the press is “the enemy of the American people.”

Those tweets came after Trump’s extremely disconcerting behavior at the NATO summit in Brussels (where the President alluded to a possible U.S. exit from the alliance) and apparently deliberate attempt to undermine Theresa May’s government by endorsing Boris Johnson for Prime Minister. In an interview with CBS, clips from which aired over the weekend, Trump described the European Union as a “foe” of America.

In short, it’s becoming harder and harder to believe that this isn’t a intentional (and perpetual) effort on the part of a sitting U.S. President to undermine America’s allies.

Still, even with that setup, it would have been difficult for anyone to predict just how poorly Trump would fare in the Putin summit. It was, again, an unmitigated disaster. You can watch the highlights here, but suffice to say Donald Trump quite literally endorsed Vladimir Putin’s position on election meddling over that of the U.S. intelligence community on the way to excoriating Democrats, talking about the DNC and “servers” and lambasting Peter Strzok. He even suggested – again – that the U.S. would be willing to work with Russia on getting to the bottom of what happened in the 2016 election, an effort which would apparently involve handing over U.S. intelligence to the Kremlin.

U.S. lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are aghast.

Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) said the following, in a statement:

This is bizarre and flat-out wrong. The United States is not to blame. America wants a good relationship with the Russian people but Vladimir Putin and his thugs are responsible for Soviet-style aggression. When the President plays these moral equivalence games, he gives Putin a propaganda win he desperately needs.

Lindsey Graham (R-SC), tweeted this:

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-LA) was even more direct:

“For the president to cast doubt is not unreasonable”, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) said, but that was all he could muster in support. He went on to say this:

Having said that, Putin is an evil man.

Pete King (R-NY) couldn’t take it, especially the bit where Putin suggested that Robert Mueller should work with the Kremlin:

Strongly disagree with Trump’s statement. [I’m] disappointed, not flabbergasted. [Russia working with Mueller] would be like bringing ISIS into a joint terrorism task force.

For their part, Trump’s cheerleaders at Fox News called the President’s performance “disgusting”:

 

Meghan McCain has had it:

John McCain said this:

Today’s press conference in Helsinki was one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory. The damage inflicted by President Trump’s naiveté, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is difficult to calculate. But it is clear that the summit in Helsinki was a tragic mistake.

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.

It is tempting to describe the press conference as a pathetic rout – as an illustration of the perils of under-preparation and inexperience. But these were not the errant tweets of a novice politician. 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.

Coming close on the heels of President Trump’s bombastic and erratic conduct towards our closest friends and allies in Brussels and Britain, today’s press conference marks a recent low point in the history of the American Presidency. That the president was attended in Helsinki by a team of competent and patriotic advisors makes his blunders and capitulations all the more painful and inexplicable.

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. Americans are waiting and hoping for President Trump to embrace that sacred responsibility. One can only hope they are not waiting totally in vain.

Matt Drudge is piling on:

And John Brennan thinks it was downright treason:

Even the dictionary is mad:

But the press conference is getting rave reviews from the only person who matters to Donald Trump – Donald Trump:

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9 comments on “‘Shameful’: Republicans Blast Trump, Fox News Calls Putin Press Conference ‘Disgusting’

  1. “In short, it’s becoming harder and harder to believe that this isn’t a intentional (and perpetual) effort on the part of a sitting U.S. President to undermine America’s allies.” Well it is time that statement is on the news everyday and it is repeated by us all to everyone we know.

  2. I’m not worried because my S&P 500 is up for the month and my financial adviser assures me that politics doesn’t affect economics, which sounds truthy to me.

  3. Anonymous

    What I found to be outlandish, was that Trump was asked about the Ukraine, and Putin answered for him. Trump had nothing to add.i am strarting to believe that Putin has personaldirt on Trump. No other explanation makes any sense, barring that Trump is mentally incompetent.

    • The less conspiratorial explanation usually is.

    • Lance Manly

      Putin has personaldirt on Trump

      So is a pee-tape personal dirt? For someone like the president yeah, so I would go with that. The thing is if Putin released it that would make the trumpsters love him more.

      • The problem with this thesis is and always has been that just as Trump is too unstable and uninhibited to be fit for office, he is equally unfit to be blackmailed.

        Seems to me that the Russians backed what they hoped would be a grenade in the middle of the Republican primaries, then counted themselves lucky when the blast radius spread to include the general election, and are still pinching themselves at how it’s paying off now.

        No need to blackmail Trump, just remind him at every turn that you are his only true friend in the world.

  4. Error404

    Totally agree with the other comments. How much better it would have been if all those US operatives raping and pillaging their way around a collapsed Russian Federation in the 1990s had been able to keep their man Boris sober and alive for just a little longer. Still, that wasn’t to be and along came Vlad. Not that he was able to save Ukraine from Victoria Nuland, of course, but nonetheless he’s still been quite the nuisance. Now we’ll just have to rely on the tried and trusted fallback of a nice war. Pity that John McCain – sensitive as he is to the plight of suffering people everywhere – won’t be around to help out, but that almost Italian-looking coalition of neocons and Clinton Dems can still be counted on. Patriots all.

  5. Lance Manly

    Hel, maybe this is where the country goes to die https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hel_(being)

    “Hilda Ellis Davidson (1948) states that Hel “as a goddess” in surviving sources seems to belong to a genre of literary personification, that the word hel is generally “used simply to signify death or the grave,” and that the word often appears as the equivalent to the English ‘death,’ which Davidson states “naturally lends itself to personification by poets.”

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