Amid DNC turmoil, Clinton campaign manager accuses GOP of becoming ‘pro-Russia’
Caught by a scandalous revelation that the Democratic National Committee is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Hillary Clinton campaign, Team Clinton is desperately trying to change the subject by accusing Russia and Donald Trump of joining force.
There was not a lot that campaign manager Robby Mook could say Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union” to defend emails showing DNC officials conspiring against Sen. Bernie Sanders. So he opted to shift blame, accusing Russian hackers of leaking the emails to help the Republican nominee, adding that it dovetails with “changes to the Republican platform to make it more pro-Russian.”
The DNC gets caught red-handed conspiring to help Clinton in the primary, and Clintonistas accuse Republicans of coddling Putin — by moving close to policies of the Democrat president.
Sen. Claire McCaskill kept up the party line on Monday, telling CNN’s Chris Cuomo there is “no question they’re doing this to try to impact our elections” because Trump would be friendlier.
It is a rich assertion coming from a party whose candidate is principal author of the infamous “reset” policy with Russia. President Obama, with Clinton as secretary of state, swept into office promising to undo all of the damage that President George W. Bush supposedly did to the the U.S. relationship with the erstwhile superpower. Clinton in 2009 even presented Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov with a red “reset button” to mark the change in policy. (Clinton was later embarrassed when it was revealed that the button had the wrong Russian word for reset and read “overcharge” instead).
Concessions to Russia included a nuclear arms agreement and reneging on plans to deploy a missile defense system in Eastern Europe. Obama continued the “reset” policy even after Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine in 2014 and annexed the Crimean Peninsula. Among Obama’s policies has been this — steadfast opposition to arming the pro-Western government in Ukraine.
But the question of arms to Ukraine is the only evidence in the platform that the Republican Party is soft on Russia. Although it does not specifically call for sending weapons to Kiev, the platform states: “We also support providing appropriate assistance to the armed forces of Ukraine and greater coordination with NATO defense planning.”
It is hard to argue that the rest of the platform’s references to Putin’s regime could be characterized as “pro-Russia.” It criticizes Obama for abandoning the missile defense system and accuses the administration of allowing Russia to build up its nuclear arsenal while America reduces its nuclear stockpile.
The platform labels Russia a “repressive” regime and vows not to accept any territorial change in Eastern Europe. It finds common cause with the Russian people over the “erosion of personal liberty and fundamental rights” by Russian leaders. And it calls out Russia for attempts to undermine U.S. cyber security.
“Repressive at home and reckless abroad, their policies imperil the nations which regained their self-determination upon the collapse of the Soviet Union,” the platform states. “We will meet the return of Russian belligerence with the same resolve that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union.”
Not exactly pro-Russian sentiments, in other words.
And, by the way, the Democratic platform drafted this month also does not call for arming Ukraine, although it does criticize Putin for violating the country’s territorial integrity. It lists other areas of disagreement but pledges accommodation on some areas.
“We will make it clear to Putin that we are prepared to cooperate with him when it is in our interest — as we did on reducing nuclear stockpiles, dismantling Iran’s nuclear program, sanctioning North Korea, and resupplying our troops in Afghanistan — but we will not hesitate to stand up to Russian aggression,” the platform states.
So to review: The DNC gets caught red-handed conspiring to help Clinton in the primary, and Clintonistas attempt to change the subject by accusing the Republicans of coddling Putin — by moving close to policies of the Democrat president. OK, then.