Rev. Franklin Graham has hit back at President Joe Biden for agreeing that Russian President Vladimir Putin is a killer, particularly at a time when Biden supports abortion.
"President Biden's words have offended the Russian people, and have set our relations with this country back considerably," Graham said Friday in a Facebook post. "The Russian Foreign Ministry has recalled their ambassador to the United States."
At the same time, Graham said, "President Biden should consider that, in God’s eyes, abortion is murder. It is the killing of the innocent, not the guilty."
Biden, he said, "supports abortion, and his administration supports abortion — even government/taxpayer funding of abortion. This year more than 185,000 babies have been murdered through abortion in this country."
Graham added he is praying that "President Biden's eyes and heart would be opened to this tragedy and that our country would change its course on abortion. We will be held accountable by God."
Earlier this week, Biden replied "mmm hmm, I do," when ABC News' George Stephanopoulos asked him during an interview if he thinks Putin is "a killer."
He was responding after his administration released an unclassified intelligence report concerning meddling in the 2020 election. The report concluded Putin had overseen efforts aimed at "denigrating" Biden's campaign against then-President Donald Trump.
Biden also told Stephanopoulos that Putin "will pay a price" for the election actions, and that "you'll see shortly" what the consequences will be.
Russia has called the report's claims baseless, and Putin has challenged Biden to a debate after his comments were made public.
Konstantin Kosachyov, the deputy speaker of Russia's upper house of Parliament, also demanded Biden's apologies and called his remark "unacceptable in any circumstances."
Moscow has recalled its U.S. ambassador, and Kosachyov warned that the pullback won't be the last reaction "unless there is an explanation and an apology from the American side."
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has called Biden's comments "very bad," and said they show that the president "clearly doesn't want to develop relations."
Meanwhile, Biden may have few targets for further actions about the election report, considering many of Putin's government officials and associates already have been sanctioned by the United States as punishment for actions including election interference, attacks on political opponents, and the annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.
Two people close to the matter said the U.S. sanctions could target Russian oligarchs and people close to Putin.
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