Local lawmakers respond to Trump-Putin summit

State and federal lawmakers are issuing statements in response to President Donald J. Trump's meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

U.S. Senator Todd Young, R-Ind. released the following statement:

“Moscow invades and bullies its neighbors, disregards its treaty obligations, seeks to divide NATO, and props up the murderous Assad regime. To protect America’s national security interests, stand up for democratic values, and deter additional aggression by Putin, we must deal with Moscow from a position of strength and unity. I have no reason to doubt the clear conclusions of the intelligence community when it comes to Moscow’s attempts to undermine our democracy. When it comes to defending our democratic institutions against foreign subversion and meddling, we are Americans—not Republicans or Democrats.”

U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, D-Ind. released the following statement:

“When given the chance to stand up for our country and its security interests, President Trump instead emboldened President Putin and disregarded the consensus conclusion of the hard-working and patriotic Americans in the intelligence community, including Director of National Intelligence and fellow Hoosier Dan Coats. This meeting was a setback for American national security. We must not tolerate efforts by Russia or other actors that disrupt our democracy or undermine our interests around the globe.”

U.S. Representative Jim Banks, R-District 3, released the following statement:

“No one wants to return to the Cold War. I want President Trump’s diplomatic efforts to be successful, but I’ll take the word of a Hoosier statesman over Vladimir Putin any day. We must take seriously the warnings of Director Coats and the American intelligence community. Russia is not our friend. Vladimir Putin’s goal is to destabilize America and reduce our global leadership role. We need to hold Russia accountable for its aggression and make it clear that America will protect our democratic institutions.”

U.S. Representative Dan Kildee, D-Flint Township, released the following statement:

“Never before has a President so quickly surrendered and betrayed longstanding U.S. values and the security interests of the American people to an adversary. The President’s weak performance was an embarrassment on the world stage.

“It’s hard to comprehend that the President stood next to Vladimir Putin and attacked the United States while in the same breath defending Russia. Despite being given repeated opportunities to hold Russia accountable for its aggressions, President Trump failed to do so. Just last week, President Trump’s own Justice Department indicted 12 Russian-directed intelligence officers for attacking our democracy. But today, President Trump sided with Russia over his own intelligence officials and repeatedly attacked his own law enforcement agencies.

“The only thing more disgraceful than the President’s performance is the continued silence of my Republican colleagues. When will Republicans put country over party and stop covering for this President?”

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