'Shameful': US lawmakers blast Trump over Putin summit

The CIA Had a Rule Against Meeting the KGB Alone. Trump Was Reckless to Ignore It With Putin.

Trump-Putin Press Conference Reaction Via Newspaper Front Pages

New York Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, both Democrats, issued statements on the summit, with Schumer holding a press conference Monday afternoon to implore Republican leaders to increase sanctions on Russian Federation and hold the president accountable. "The damage inflicted by President Trump's naivete, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is hard to calculate", McCain said in a blistering statement.

"No prior president has ever abased himself more abjectly before a tyrant", Mr McCain said in a statement.

The role of the Intelligence Community is to provide the best information and fact-based assessments possible for the President and policymakers.

Coats added that Russian Federation remains behind "ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy".

"We know the Russians meddled in our elections, and we must continue our sanctions and diplomatic pressure against Putin's actions". During World War II, "Russia lost 50 million people and helped us win the war", he said.

"I can not see how it is in America's interest to blame fellow Americans for a hostile foreign power's attack on our democracy", Delgado tweeted.

Mr Putin also dismissed longstanding reports that Russian intelligence may hold compromising material on Mr Trump. He doesn't "want nuclear weapons, even people thinking about it", he added.

Mr Putin described the Helsinki meeting as "candid and useful" while Mr Trump said there had been "deeply productive dialogue". "There is no moral equivalence between the United States and Russian Federation, which remains hostile to our most basic values and ideals", he said.

He said he meant to say he doesn't see why Russian Federation "wouldn't" be responsible for interference.

Trump, bent on forging a personal bond with the Kremlin chief despite the election allegations, went into the summit blaming the "stupidity" of his predecessors for plunging ties to their present low. "I never thought I would see the day when our American president would stand on the stage with the Russian president and place blame on the United States for Russian aggression".

Putin's nonchalant body language during the summit prompted a Russian state TV host to quip: "Putin looks much more relaxed". Putin allies have touted Trump's "pragmatism" compared to President Barack Obama, who often spoke of the need for countries such as Ukraine to evolve as democratic societies.

Democratic California Representative Jimmy Gomez charged: "To side with Putin over United States intelligence is disgusting; to fail to defend the USA is on the verge of treason".

The prime minister said he was working to protect Australia's democracy from foreign interference with new laws.

Democratic Senator Chris Murphy was blunter: "This entire trip has just been one giant middle finger from President Trump to his own country". And the USA political world - and even the White House's own communications team - is unsettled.

Former CIA Director John Brennan, who served under President Barack Obama, called Trump's words "nothing short of treasonous".

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