Yesterday once again proved that Trump and congressional Republicans cannot be trusted to defend our democracy or protect our country’s national security.
Trump refused to implement congressionally mandated sanctions against Russia, which were passed in the House by a vote of 419-3 and in the Senate 98-2.
Washington Post: “The Trump administration, under fire from lawmakers for not punishing Moscow over election meddling, said Monday it will not implement Russia-related sanctions mandated by Congress last year because the threat itself is acting as a ‘deterrent.’”
NBC News: “The Senate overwhelmingly voted Thursday to impose new sanctions on Russia, joining the House in approving the measure by veto-proof margins. The vote on the bill — which would also add sanctions against North Korea and Iran — was 98-2, with only Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Rand Paul, R-Ky., dissenting. The House passed the measure on Tuesday by 419-3.”
Just before the White House announced Trump’s refusal to implement sanctions, Trump’s own CIA director warned that Russia would try and attack our democracy again.
BBC: “Even though there has been co-operation in counter-terrorism (the CIA helped stop a plot in St Petersburg last year), Mr Pompeo says he still sees Russia primarily as an adversary, sharing the concerns in many European countries about its subversion. ‘I haven't seen a significant decrease in their activity,’ he said. Asked if his concerns extended to the upcoming US mid-term elections in November, he replied: ‘Of course. I have every expectation that they will continue to try and do that, but I'm confident that America will be able to have a free and fair election [and] that we will push back in a way that is sufficiently robust that the impact they have on our election won't be great.’”
Meanwhile, House Republicans continued their campaign to tarnish and discredit the FBI and Special Counsel’s investigations by deciding in a partisan vote to release Devin Nunes’ memo, and not the memo from Democrats correcting their dishonest attempts to twist the facts.
CNN: “The House Intelligence Committee voted along party lines Monday to publicly release a classified memo written by Republicans alleging FBI abuses in the agency's surveillance, an aggressive move that could feed a GOP push to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation and ratchets up a battle with the Justice Department. … But in another party-line vote, the committee voted against making a competing Democratic memo from Rep. Adam Schiff of California available as well.”
This is the same mysterious memo that Russian bots campaigned to be released and Trump’s own Justice Department warned would be “extraordinarily reckless.”
Newsweek: “The question now becomes whether the memo will ever be released publicly. The DOJ warned Nunes that releasing the memo to the public would be ‘extremely reckless,’ but that won't stop Nunes if he wants to make the document public.”
Newsweek: “Top congressional Democrats have asked Facebook and Twitter to investigate whether Russian bots and trolls helped spur an online campaign to release a controversial classified memo that some Republicans say shows bias in the FBI's Trump-Russian probe. The hashtag ‘#ReleaseTheMemo’ exploded on Twitter last Thursday, according to the Alliance for Securing Democracy, a bipartisan national security group tracking 600 Twitter accounts linked to Russian influence operations.”