Tags: Russia | Trump Administration | chris murphy | trump | russia | sanctions

Sen. Chris Murphy: Trump Decision on Russia Sanctions Means No Deterrents

Sen. Chris Murphy: Trump Decision on Russia Sanctions Means No Deterrents
(AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 30 January 2018 08:37 AM

The Trump administration's announcement that it would not enforce new sanctions, for now, in retaliation for Russian meddling in the 2016 election is no deterrent for stopping attempts to influence further elections, Sen. Chris Murphy said Tuesday.

"I'm glad to hear [CIA Director] Mike Pompeo taking seriously what we believe to be the Russians attempts to try to influence the 2018 election," the Connecticut Democrat told MSNBC's "Morning Joe." 

"[President] Donald Trump is sending them totally different signals, telling them that there's no consequences for your prior manipulation of U.S. elections. That's no deterrent at all."

On Monday, the Trump administration released a list of 114 Russian politicians and 96 "oligarchs" who have flourished under President Vladimir Putin to fulfill a congressional demand that the United States punish Moscow for its interference in the election.

"What we know is that the Russians are still deeply aligned with Donald Trump's political future," said Murphy. "It was Russian bots that were spinning out the hashtag 'Schumer shutdown,' trying to help Trump politically win that fight, you would expect they will be aligned with them this fall.

"In part because Trump has taken America off the playing field in places like the Middle East, leaving Russia to gain influence all over."

On Monday, Pompeo told the BBC that he has "every expectation" that Russia will continue to try to interfere in this year's midterms, but added that he's confident that the United States will have free and fair election and that it will push back so that Russia's "impact on our election won't be great."

"I'm glad that Pompeo is serious about this," said Murphy. "I know others in the Justice Department is serious about it. But when Russia realizes there's no consequence to be paid for in the past, it means that they are likely to go at it again in the future."

However, the Russian influence also came into play over a decision to release a Republican memo claiming FBI misconduct in obtaining a search warrant against former Trump aide Carter Page, said Murphy.

"Russian intelligence agencies [were] guiding their Twitter bots to start talking about releasing a memo that they know would hurt the United States' Intel community," said Murphy.

"Where are we as a nation when you have Paul Ryan's party and Kevin Mccarthy's party, embracing the support of Russian intelligence agencies, directly or indirectly and doing their bidding?"

Murphy said he's concerned about the continuing influence as well and warned that Russians are aligned "temporarily" with Republicans "because they think it suits their interests...because Trump is taking America off the playing field in parts of the world in which Russia wants to exert influence."

But in another five or 10 years, Russians could be trying to hurt Republicans, said Murphy.

"I don't think we should assume that democracy is going to stick around for the next 200 years," he said. "You have to cultivate it you have to protect it.

"When you have a foreign government trying to undermine it, usually this is a place where both parties stand together to push out that foreign influence. Too bad that's not happening today."

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Sen. Chris Murphy said Tuesday the Trump administration's announcement that it would not enforce new sanctions, for now, in retaliation for Russian meddling in the 2016 election is no deterrent for stopping attempts. . .
chris murphy, trump, russia, sanctions
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2018-37-30
Tuesday, 30 January 2018 08:37 AM
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