Top Democrats urge Trump to cancel meeting with Putin

Saul Bowman
July 15, 2018

Meeting between presidents of Russian Federation and America - Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump - will begin July 16.

US President Donald Trump disembarks Air Force One with US First Lady Melania Trump at Prestwick Airport, south of Glasgow. The group claimed that the protest forced Mr. Trump to take cover, with a statement saying "as the glider appears overhead the president can be seen making for the entrance breaking into a trot".

Trump and Putin, who control the world's two biggest nuclear arsenals, are due to meet in the Finnish capital, a venue that evokes memories of Cold War showdowns between the Soviet Union and the US.

This is the latest development in an ongoing investigation into Russia's alleged meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

President Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May held a joint press conference after a private meeting Friday morning at Chequers in Buckinghamshire.

But Trump has also repeatedly said he takes Putin at his word when he denies any involvement.

Whatever Donald Trump had hoped to get out of his summit with Vladimir Putin, Robert Mueller changed the game.

Trump declared "I am the evidence" when Scottish lawmakers asked him to back up his assertion that the wind farm would "destroy the financial wellbeing of Scotland".

"Trump should cancel the meeting or make it an open meeting, confronting Putin on his aggression & taking measures to hold them accountable", Booker said.

At 3.5 percent, the United States' own annual defense spending is below the 4-percent-of-GDP level that Trump has said it is, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation figures show.

"This is just one more case of political malpractice", he said.

When asked at a news conference on Friday whether he would tell Putin to stay out of USA elections, Trump said "yes".

Trump has previously shown little appetite for pressing the issue, telling reporters after meeting with Putin in Vietnam last November that he was done discussing it and that he believed the Russian leader's denials were honest.

Other Democrats joining the call to jettison the meeting included Senator Richard Blumenthal of CT and Representative Adam Schiff of California, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee. "So I wouldn't underplay at all the importance of actually sitting down for the first time in a meeting-summit environment and discussing the issues that really matter most".

Trump has said he plans to raise the issue.

-Russian relations soured after Moscow's 2014 annexation of Crimea.

"If they don't extend New Start, there is a worrisome possibility that by 2021 there will be no legally binding limits on the world's two largest arsenals, and as a result, all of the hard security challenges we have with the Russians will become even more hard to manage", Kimball said.

Some European officials feel strongly that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation should be more confident in calling out Trump's mis-statements about the alliance. "This isn't good for the United States and there are people across the aisle - as the Senate vote yesterday clearly showed - who know it and need to say it", Kerry said on Twitter. As with North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, whom Trump met in Singapore in June, the president believes he can generate broad and unprecedented cooperation between the US and Russian Federation despite seemingly intractable differences.

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