Democratic Party - Democratic National Committee

04/07/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/07/2024 15:30

Donald Trump and MAGA Republicans Are Pandering to Putin Arrow

In response to Donald Trump and RNC chair Michael Whatley siding with Putin over our allies, DNC Rapid Response Director Alex Floyd released the following statement:

"Donald Trump has been clear that his foreign policy agenda is letting Putin 'do whatever the hell he wants,' no matter how disastrous for the U.S. and our allies. Trump and his MAGA mouthpieces keep parroting Putin's talking points - while Trump is plotting to reward Putin for his invasion of Ukraine, his handpicked RNC chair Michael Whatley is referring to Ukraine as an 'aggressive' adversary. MAGA extremists are refusing to support our allies and pandering to Putin but President Biden will continue to champion democracy and stand with our allies in their time of need. The stakes of November's election for freedom at home and abroad are clear, and voters will never give Trump and his MAGA minions another chance to abandon American leadership on the world stage."

New reporting detailed Donald Trump's plans to reward Putin for his invasion of Ukraine…

Washington Post: "Former president Donald Trump has privately said he could end Russia's war in Ukraine by pressuring Ukraine to give up some territory… Some foreign policy experts said Trump's idea would reward Russian President Vladimir Putin and condone the violation of internationally recognized borders by force."

"Accepting Russian control over parts of Ukraine would expand the reach of Putin's dictatorship after what has been the biggest land war in Europe since World War II. … Out of office, Trump has pressured congressional Republicans to resist additional American support for Ukraine's war effort."

"Trump has consistently complimented Putin, expressed admiration for his dictatorial rule and gone out of his way to avoid criticizing him, most recently for the death in jail of political opponent Alexei Navalny. He has not called for the release of Evan Gershkovich, the Wall Street Journal reporter held in Russia for a year without charges or a trial."

… while RNC chair Michael Whatley parrotted Putin's talking points by referring to Ukraine as an "aggressive" adversary.

Newsweek: "Trump's RNC Chair Includes Ukraine in List of US Adversaries"

Rolling Stone: "[Whatley] claimed Ukraine was an 'aggressive' opponent of the U.S. along with China and Iran."

Whatley: "[President Biden's leadership] has shown… Ukraine… that they can feel free to be much more aggressive on the world front."

Trump has previously said he would let Putin "take over" parts of Ukraine - he has praised Putin's invasion of Ukraine as "genius" and "savvy" and constantly brags about his "good relationship" with Putin.

Daily Beast: "Fox News Edits Out Trump Saying He Might've Let Russia 'Take Over' Parts of Ukraine"

"[Trump] revealed how he personally would have prevented the war. According to Trump, all he needed to do was let Russia 'take over' parts of Ukraine."

New York Times: "Mr. Trump often praises Mr. Putin - he has described the invasion of Ukraine as the work of a 'genius' - and has long admired him as a 'strong' leader."

Washington Post, February 2022: "'Genius,' 'Savvy': Trump reacts to Putin's invasion of Ukraine exactly as you'd expect"

Donald Trump, February 2022: "Putin is now saying, 'It's independent,' a large section of Ukraine. I said, 'How smart is that?' And he's gonna go in and be a peacekeeper. … Here's a guy who's very savvy."

Trump on Putin: "We had a very good relationship."

Donald Trump, March 2023: "I got along very well with Putin."

CNN: "Trump sides with Putin over US intelligence"

Trump is threatening to pull the U.S. out of NATO and said he would encourage Russia to "do whatever the hell they want" - including attack our allies - and his MAGA allies have refused to condemn his shameful comments.

Politico: "Trump says he would 'encourage' Russia to attack NATO allies who don't pay up"

The Independent: "Trump refuses to commit to NATO in second term at Fox News town hall"

Trump: "We have to finish the process we began under my Administration of fundamentally reevaluating NATO's purpose and NATO's mission."

Rolling Stone: "​​Trump Plots to Pull Out of NATO - If He Doesn't Get His Way"

"Donald Trump wanted to pull the United States out of NATO during his first term, but was repeatedly talked out of it by senior administration officials. For a possible second term in the White House, [Trump] is already discussing how he could actually get it done, if his demands aren't met by NATO."

Politico: "Trump vowed he'd 'never' help Europe if it's attacked, top EU official says"

New York Times: "G.O.P. Officials, Once Critical, Stand by Trump After NATO Comments"

"After Donald J. Trump suggested he had threatened to encourage Russia to attack 'delinquent' NATO allies, the response among many Republican officials has struck three themes - expressions of support, gaze aversion or even cheerful indifference. Republican Party elites have become so practiced at deflecting even Mr. Trump's most outrageous statements that they quickly batted this one away."

CNN:"Rubio dismisses concerns about Trump's NATO remarks as backlash mounts."

Trump has vowed to be a dictator on "day one" and repeatedly praises and echoes dictators.

Trump: "He says, 'You're not going to be a dictator, are you?' I said, 'No, no, no, other than day one.'"

New York Times: "Twice during a town hall on 'Fox News' on Tuesday night, Sean Hannity asked former President Donald J. Trump to say categorically that he would not abuse presidential power and retaliate against his political opponents if elected next year. Both times, Mr. Trump declined to give an outright denial."

"'Do you in any way have any plans whatsoever, if re-elected president, to abuse power?' Mr. Hannity asked. 'To break the law? To use the government to go after people?' Mr. Trump, the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, deflected."

Associated Press: "Trump declines to rule out abusing power to seek retribution if he returns to the White House"

MSNBC: "According to Trump's own on-air comments, he envisions a near-future in which he runs for the nation's highest office, wins, creates a temporary dictatorship, pursues some goals he considers worthwhile, and then voluntarily agrees to start honoring the United States' constitutional system of government again."

Washington Post: "Trump calls political enemies 'vermin,' echoing dictators Hitler, Mussolini"

Axios: "Some historians have compared Trump's dehumanizing language - including his claim that undocumented immigrants are 'poisoning the blood of our country' - to the rhetoric of fascist dictators like Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini."

New York Magazine: "Trump Touts Endorsements From Global Dictators"

Reminder: Trump's reckless foreign policy agenda undermined American leadership on the global stage.

New York Times: "America's Allies Fear That Traditional Ties No Longer Matter Under Trump"

Politico: "Trump's approach is hurting the U.S., foreign policy experts say"

Associated Press: "Three years into Donald Trump's presidency, America's global influence is waning. In interviews with The Associated Press, diplomats, foreign officials and scholars from numerous countries describe a changing world order in which the United States has less of a central role."

New York Times: "Much of the world has soured on American leadership since President Trump took office, a loss of faith that has opened up opportunities for other countries like China, Russia and Germany to assert themselves on the international stage, according to an extensive new survey of people living around the globe."