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Rep. Lieu: Trump’s Statements in Helsinki ‘Utterly Shameful’

WASHINGTON — Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Los Angeles) on July 16 issued the following statement after President Trump met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Finland:

“What Trump did today was utterly shameful, and a slap in the face to the professionals in the Department of Justice and our intelligence community. Today we watched a U.S. president offer total deference to a hostile foreign power while attacking U.S. institutions.

“By refusing to admit that Russia attacked our democracy, or that Russia did anything wrong whatsoever, Trump is disturbingly regurgitating the Kremlin’s talking points.

“Having served on active duty, I feel nauseous thinking about Trump’s statements. Despite how desensitized we’ve become to Trump’s remarkably unpresidential actions, today should stand out as obscene.

“What happens next will determine whether we allow our president to cede American ideals and authority to a foreign power. We’re now at a crossroads where we have to decide whether we’re willing to let blind partisan loyalty to Trump lead to the debasing of our country. After this appalling display, will the Republicans finally stand up for America?”

Other members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus expressed similar sentiments.

Rep. Mark Takano (D-Riverside): “If Republicans in Congress are truly concerned by the president’s relationship with Russia and Putin, they should join Democrats and pass the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act to protect the Mueller investigation.”

Rep. Judy Chu (D-Pasadena): “Trump’s behavior in Helsinki was disgraceful, dangerous, and damaging. Republicans agree. But when we put forward a resolution expressing that officially, they all balked at the chance. This inaction will embolden Trump to go further. Congress must be a check on power!”

Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento): “It’s outrageous that the president of the United States has decided to believe Putin over his own U.S. intelligence community. This undermines the very essence of our democracy.”

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Santa Clara): “It’s shameful that Trump is going against the entire U.S. intelligence community in his defense of Putin. His behavior in Helsinki is totally unbecoming of an American president.”

Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-Hawaii): “The U.S. president trusts Vladimir Putin more than his director of national intelligence, the CIA, FBI and the Justice Dept. It is difficult to comprehend but not surprising given Trump’s comments. We must protect our elections and homeland from foreign attacks. Do your job, POTUS.”

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.): “I have always believed in diplomacy and dialogue, even with those with whom we have the greatest tensions. However, what we saw today was the president of the United States belittling our country’s own men and women in the intelligence community, refusing to acknowledge or hold accountable Putin for Russian hacking in our elections, and standing in the most servile way next to Putin, advancing Russia’s interests in spite of what that means for America.

“In refusing to raise any of the critical issues that lie between our countries and essentially endorsing Putin and what he stands for, Trump has left the American people wondering who this president really represents. Even more, with Trump’s refusal to accept the facts of Russian interference in our elections, he essentially invites Russia and other foreign powers to continue to attack our next elections.”

Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.): “As expected, President Trump failed to confront President Putin on Russian government interference in our elections and placed more trust in the Russian dictator’s denials than in the assessments of the American intelligence community. President Trump did not carry out his responsibility as a global leader, and he should have done much more than simply asking the question of whether interference occurred. President Trump’s failure to stand up to the Kremlin has given it carte blanche to interfere in our upcoming elections, and that should frighten us all.”

Rep. Grace Meng (D-N.Y.): “The Trump-Putin summit in Helsinki did nothing to advance our national security or secure our elections from foreign interference. Trump couldn’t even answer a simple question of whether he believed his own intelligence agencies or Putin. This is shocking and shameful.”

Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-Fla.): “While every patriotic American wants to see U.S.-Russia relations improve in a way that advances U.S. interests, that will only happen if President Trump holds Putin’s Russia accountable for its reprehensible actions around the world, including its interference in our democracy.”

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.): “Trump flattered Putin, who attacked our democracy, and insulted the brave men and women of our intelligence community. It is disgraceful.”

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii): “With Russia shooting cyber missiles at our country, @realdonaldtrump does nothing except side with Putin against our own intelligence and law enforcement community. Advantage, Putin …

“For all of my Republican colleagues looking for something to do after the Helsinki summit: join me in demanding a full Senate vote on the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act. It passed the Judiciary Committee on a bipartisan basis.”

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.): “Donald Trump is wrong. There can be no moral equivalence drawn between the United States of America and Putin’s Russia. Today’s events are yet another example of Donald Trump’s feckless ‘leadership’ on the world stage.”

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