By Agence France-Presse
Senior Republican senators on Sunday ridiculed US President Donald Trump’s plan to work with Russia to forestall election meddling, with one likening it to working with the Syrian regime to forestall chemical assaults.
The feedback from Senators Marco Rubio, John McCain and Lindsey Graham got here as Trump and his high advisers tried to put the most effective face on the US president’s prolonged assembly Friday with President Vladimir Putin of Russia.
Trump tweeted Sunday that it was time to work “constructively” with Russia, regardless of Moscow’s alleged interference in final November’s US election, and he stated he and Putin had mentioned organising “an impenetrable cyber security unit” to forestall any future election hacking.
That drew expressions of unmasked scorn from the Republican senators.
“Partnering with Putin on a ‘Cyber Security Unit’ is akin to partnering with Assad on a ‘Chemical Weapons Unit,’” Rubio tweeted early Sunday, referring to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Rubio sits on each the international relations and intelligence committees.
McCain, voice dripping with sarcasm, advised a CBS interviewer that “I am sure that Vladimir Putin could be of enormous assistance in that effort, since he’s doing the hacking.” McCain chairs the armed providers committee.
And Graham, with equal sarcasm, stated on NBC that the cyber concept was “not the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard, but it’s pretty close.” Graham is a member of the armed providers committee.
Graham stated he thought Trump was doing “a good job” in Afghanistan, on North Korea and within the battle towards the Islamic State group, however then added: “When it comes to Russia, he’s got a blind spot, and to forgive and forget when it comes to Putin regarding cyber attacks is to empower Putin, and that’s exactly what he’s doing.”
All three senators have criticized Trump at instances. Rubio and Graham vied unsuccessfully with Trump for the Republican presidential nomination final yr. McCain was the Republican candidate for president in 2008. (AFP)