Donald Trump just came off what was arguably the worst week of his presidency. Americans still aren’t sure what transpired during his summit with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki. Even worse, the press conference afterwards, in which Trump appeared to contradict his own intelligence community, left Democrats and liberals scouring their thesauruses for new synonyms for outrage.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, the White House announced Thursday that Putin had been invited to Washington this fall for round twi of the summit (or perhaps a do-over of round one).
Among those who expressed fresh outrage was the more-exasperated-than-usual tag team of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. In a statement Friday, Pelosi said:
The notion that President Trump would invite a tyrant to Washington is beyond belief. President Trump’s frightened fawning over Putin is an embarrassment, and a grave threat to our democracy.
Schumer used the occasion to reprise the popular Democratic meme that Putin “has something” on Trump:
What could possibly cause President Trump to put the interests of Russia over those of the United States? Millions of Americans will continue to wonder if the only possible explanation for this dangerous behavior is the possibility that President Putin holds damaging information over President Trump.
For all the sputtering and fuming, you’d almost think that for once the Democrats were being consistent — that they have always recognized Russia to be the existential danger that they now claim it to be and that Vladimir Putin since birth has been public enemy number 1.
But a glimpse backward suggests otherwise. As recently as the 2012 presidential election, you had Barack Obama responding to GOP challenger Mitt Romney’s assertion that Russia poses an international threat with a mangled “Seinfeld” joke:
As for Schumer, he hasn’t always viewed Putin as a scourge. Here he is, cordially welcoming the Russia leader to his hometown of New York.