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When it comes to Russia, McConnell is no patriot

Dana Milbank on

WASHINGTON -- Mitch McConnell is a Russian asset.

This doesn't mean he's a spy, but neither is it a flip accusation. Russia attacked our country in 2016. It is attacking us today. Its attacks will intensify in 2020. Yet each time we try to raise our defenses to repel the attack, McConnell, the Senate majority leader, blocks us from defending ourselves.

Let's call this what it is: unpatriotic. The Kentucky Republican is, arguably more than any other American, doing Russian President Vladimir Putin's bidding.

Robert Mueller sat before Congress this last week warning that the Russia threat "deserves the attention of every American." He said "the Russian government's efforts to interfere in our election is among the most serious" challenges to American democracy he has ever seen. "They are doing it as we sit here, and they expect to do it during the next campaign," he warned, adding that "much more needs to be done in order to protect against these intrusions, not just by the Russians but others as well."

Not three hours after Mueller finished testifying, Mark Warner, D-Va., vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, went to the Senate floor to request unanimous consent to pass legislation requiring presidential campaigns to report to the FBI any offers of assistance from agents of foreign governments.

Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., was there to represent her leader's interests. "I object," she said.

 

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., attempted to move a bill that would require campaigns to report to the FBI contributions by foreign nationals.

"I object," said Hyde-Smith.

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., tried to force action on bipartisan legislation, written with Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., and supported by Sens. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., and Bill Cassidy, R-La., protecting lawmakers from foreign cyberattacks. "The majority leader, our colleague from Kentucky, must stop blocking this common-sense legislation and allow this body to better defend itself against foreign hackers," he said.

"I object," repeated Hyde-Smith.

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