Doug Lamborn’s decision to refuse to join his congressional colleagues in their bipartisan disapproval of President Trump’s comments about Russia’s hacking of the 2016 election is disturbing.
His district is home to one of the highest concentrations of military in the U.S. and their Commander-in-Chief’s words of support for a dangerous adversary must cause especially deep concern for those who defend our freedom every day.
By putting his finger up to the political winds before making a statement, Lamborn is showing neither leadership nor a grasp of the seriousness of the situation.
Vladimir Putin is not our friend, and there is ample evidence that Russia meddled in our elections. Russia has repeatedly violated international law, shown disregard for national sovereignty, engaged in human rights abuses, propped up state sponsors of terror, and fueled global instability. Russia’s attacks on our electoral system damage the very democratic principles upon which our country was built. I strongly urge President Trump and this Administration to hold Russia and Putin accountable. I will continue to support strong economic sanctions against Russia and measures to protect the integrity of our elections.Bennet:
Today, President Trump failed to hold Vladimir Putin to account even on the most straightforward national security threats.
By taking Vladimir Putin at his word—when it directly contradicts the U.S. intelligence community’s assessment and the investigations of Russia’s interference in the 2016 election — President Trump not only has failed to protect our democracy, but also has emboldened Russia and other adversaries at the expense of our allies.
President Trump should have used this meeting to hold Putin accountable for undermining democracies around the world, a chemical attack on United Kingdom soil, and the continued illegal annexation of Crimea. Instead, he held a summit with no plan that only served to elevate Putin on the world stage. In the face of attacks on our allies and partners in the European Union and NATO, Republicans and Democrats in Congress must work to protect the international institutions that advance our values and freedoms.
Whether it be chemical attacks on allied soil, the invasion of Ukraine, propping up the murderer Assad in Syria, or meddling in our elections through cyber-attacks, Vladimir Putin’s Russia remains an adversary to the United States. I believe Russia is a state sponsor of terror and I’ve introduced legislation that would mandate the State Department to determine whether Russia merits this designation, along with their allies Iran and Syria that are already designated. Additionally, I will continue to support maximum economic sanctions on Russia, including the full implementation of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) that passed the Senate by a vote of 98-2.
I encourage the Administration to avoid the mistakes of past Administrations in normalizing relations with Russia at zero cost to Putin and his regime. The only ‘reset’ we can have with Russia is when it completely reverses course and begins to act in accordance with civilized norms and international law. Nothing should change as of today – Putin’s Russia is not a friend to the United States.