The Senate’s No. 2 Democrat on Sunday refused to say whether he believes President Donald Trump has been compromised by the Kremlin but questioned why the commander in chief is “so chummy” with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“You know, there’s so many questions raised,” Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin told host George Stephanopoulos during an interview on ABC’s “This Week.”
“Why is he so chummy with Vladimir Putin? This man, who is a former KGB agent, never been a friend of the United States, invaded our allies, threatens us around the world and tries his damnedest to undermine our elections,” the Illinois Democrat said.
The Washington Post on Saturday reported that Trump “has gone to extraordinary lengths to conceal details” of his talks with Putin and that Trump took his interpreter’s notes following a 2017 meeting with Putin in Hamburg, Germany.
The Post also reported that there is no detailed record of Trump’s interactions with Putin at five locations over the past two years, according to U.S. officials.
“Why has this [guy been] President Trump’s best buddy? I don’t get it,” Durbin said Saturday.
“And when he takes the interpreter’s notes and wants to destroy them so no one can see what was said in written transcript, you know, it raises serious questions about the relationship between this president and Putin,” he added.
In a Saturday interview with Fox News following the publication of the Post’s report, Trump said he “couldn’t care less” whether the details of his roughly two-hour private conversation with Putin at last summer’s Helsinki summit are made public.
“I’m not keeping anything under wraps,” the president said.
The New York Times on Friday reported that the FBI opened an inquiry focused on whether Trump was a national security threat to his own country shortly after he fired FBI Director James Comey in May 2017. Asked by Fox News host Jeanine Pirro if he’d ever worked on behalf of Russia, Trump did not directly answer the question, instead calling the Times’ report “insulting.”
Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine
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