“These indictments are further proof of what everyone but the president seems to understand: President Putin is an adversary who interfered in our elections to help President Trump win,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., wrote in a statement.
“President Trump should cancel his meeting with Vladimir Putin until Russia takes demonstrable and transparent steps to prove that they won’t interfere in future elections. Glad-handing with Vladimir Putin on the heels of these indictments would be an insult to our democracy,” he continued.
Colleague Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., echoed Schumer’s message, saying Trump should “certainly” not speak with Putin alone.
Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said Trump should not meet Putin alone because he could be “taken advantage of.”
“We’ve see the results of his ad hoc style,” Warner told reporters, referring to Trump’s recent summit with North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un.
On the House side, Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., added that the planned summit should only take place when and if Putin takes responsibility for Russian interference in the 2016 presidential contest, while Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., was adamant “enough was enough.”
In light of the charges against 12 GRU officers announced by Rod Rosenstein, @realDonaldTrump should cancel his meeting with Putin, who ordered the attack on the US. @POTUS shouldn’t meet Putin until he accepts responsibility. And Trump should definitely not meet him alone. https://t.co/bP71DdGOHB
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) July 13, 2018
Former Rep. David Jolly, R-Fla., lent his right-leaning voice to the call.
Upon hearing Rosenstein’s announcement just now, Trump should immediately cancel his Putin meeting.
— David Jolly (@DavidJollyFL) July 13, 2018
Mueller’s indictment, returned Friday in federal court, alleged that the 12 Russian officials “engaged in a sustained effort” to break into computers owned by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Democratic National Committee, and Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
The development was made public just days before Trump will meet with Putin in Helsinki, Finland, on Monday. He is expected to broach the topic of Russian meddling in the election that launched him into the White House.