Sen. John McCain mentioned Friday that the U.S.-Russia summit in Helsinki “mustn’t transfer ahead” except President Trump is prepared to carry Russia accountable for political meddling. This, after 12 Russian intelligence officers had been indicted for allegedly hacking emails from the Clinton marketing campaign and the Democratic Celebration within the 2016 election.
The Republican senator from Arizona launched an announcement praising the costs, which arose out of Particular Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian interference within the election.
The 12 members belonging to the Russian Intelligence company are accused of hacking into emails from the Hillary marketing campaign and her get together, and of leaking damaging discussions between high get together members.
“In the present day’s indictment is a results of the exhausting work of America’s legislation enforcement and intelligence officers who dedicate their lives to bringing to justice those that want to do us hurt,” McCain, who has been sidelined whereas battling most cancers, mentioned in an announcement.
“These revelations add to a physique of proof confirming an in depth plot by Vladimir Putin’s authorities to assault the 2016 election, sow chaos and dissension among the many American voters, and undermine religion in our democracy.”
McCain has been a vocal critic of Trump, lately calling his go to to the NATO summit in Brussels “disappointing.”
Whereas not expressing outright help for the assembly with Russia, which is to happen on Monday, McCain mentioned Thursday that that summit represented a chance for Trump “to reveal his willingness to defend America” towards its adversaries.
“Putin will not be America’s buddy. … Putin is America’s enemy,” McCain mentioned.
He doubled down on that sentiment on Friday, urging Trump to carry the Russian president “accountable.”
“President Trump have to be prepared to confront Putin from a place of energy and reveal that there will probably be a severe worth to pay for his ongoing aggression in the direction of the US and democracies around the globe,” the senator mentioned. “If President Trump will not be ready to carry Putin accountable, the summit in Helsinki mustn’t transfer ahead.”
Trump and Putin will meet of their first official standalone assembly on Monday on the Presidential Palace in Finland. The pair have met twice earlier than, on the sidelines of worldwide conferences.
On Friday, a number of Democratic leaders additionally weighed in, in some cases urging the president to contemplate canceling his summit with Putin.
Sen. Mark Warner, high Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, provided Trump an ultimatum for the extremely anticipated summit: make Russian interference a precedence, or cancel the assembly.
Fox Information’ Alex Pappas and The Related Press contributed to this report.