On Tuesday, John McCain, the senator from Arizona who campaigns as a Republican but otherwise acts as a liberal Democrat, slammed President Trump for congratulating Russian President Vladimir Putin on his election victory.
“An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections,” he said in a statement posted to his official site.
“And by doing so with Vladimir Putin, President Trump insulted every Russian citizen who was denied the right to vote in a free and fair election to determine their country’s future, including the countless Russian patriots who have risked so much to protest and resist Putin’s regime,” he added.
It’s interesting to note that Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama, also congratulated Putin when he won his election in 2012, even though that election was called into question.
According to a 2012 post at Foreign Policy:
The Russian people and international observers may not see last Sunday’s presidential election in Russia as legitimate, but President Barack Obama has now officially endorsed the return of Russian past and future President Vladimir Putin.
“President Obama called Russian President-elect and Prime Minister Putin to congratulate him on his recent victory in the Russian Presidential election,” the White House said in a late Friday afternoon statement (read: news dump) about the Friday morning phone call between the two leaders.
“President Obama highlighted achievements in U.S.-Russia relations over the past three years with President Medvedev, including cooperation on Afghanistan, the conclusion and ratification of the START agreement, Russia’s recent invitation to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) and cooperation on Iran,” the statement read. “President Obama and President-Elect Putin agreed that the successful reset in relations should be built upon during the coming years.”
Obama told Putin he looked forward to Putin’s May visit to Camp David for the G-8 summit and the two talked about how they could benefit economically from Russia’s joining the WTO, the statement explained.
McCain’s fellow leftists also trashed Trump for congratulating Putin, but we couldn’t find any such criticism of Obama by the Left. We also searched McCain’s official site and found no such criticism of Obama for his 2012 call.
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