Will Republicans break with Trump over Russia?

Susan B Glasser writes: President Donald Trump is “dangerously naïve.”

He has a “pathological unwillingness to criticize anything the Kremlin does.” He is discrediting U.S. intelligence agencies and “telling the world they can’t be believed.”

As for Trump’s refusal to disavow Russian President Vladimir Putin and the murders and poisonings of Putin critics in recent years because, as Trump put it, America has “killers” too? “I don’t think we’ve ever had a more harmful statement come out of the Oval Office than that one,” says Rep. Adam Schiff, ranking member of the House intelligence committee, in an extensive interview for our new podcast, The Global Politico.

Schiff, a Harvard-trained lawyer who made his career by prosecuting an FBI agent caught in a sex-for-secrets trap by the Soviet Union, has been one of the leading Democrats calling for a more serious investigation of Trump’s mysterious ties to Russia. Last week, when national security adviser Michael Flynn was forced to resign after misleading the vice president about his December phone call with the Russian ambassador, Schiff quickly demanded an expansion of the House intel panel’s probe of the 2016 election hacking to include the Flynn matter, an expansion Chairman Devin Nunes reluctantly agreed to late last week. [Continue reading…]

Bloomberg reports: U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham promised that Congress will press ahead with a bill to sanction Russia for interfering in the U.S. presidential election, and investigate the methods it used, to make sure other countries don’t fall victim to similar hacking attacks.

Graham, a Republican from South Carolina, called on President Donald Trump to make a clear statement that Russia must pay a price for interfering with the election even though Democrats suffered most from the hacking. A Senate bill to sanction Russia is likely to get more than 75 votes and Trump should sign it, he told the Munich Security Conference on Sunday. [Continue reading…]

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