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Rep. Justin Amash Slams Trump/Putin Press Conference: POTUS Spoke 'Like the Head of a Vassal State'

In a series of tweets, the libertarian-leaning Republican detailed why Trump's joint press conference with Vladimir Putin was all wrong.

KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS/NewscomKEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS/NewscomRep. Justin Amash (R–Mich.) offered a detailed criticism on Twitter yesterday of U.S. President Donald Trump's recent joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Among other observations, Amash argued that Trump "went out of his way to appear subordinate" and "spoke more like the head of a vassal state."

Amash's Twitter thread came two days after Trump told the world he accepted Putin's claim that the Russian government did not interfere in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Widespread criticism ensued from across the political spectrum, leading Trump to claim Tuesday that he misspoke and believed Russia did interfere in the election.

Amash indicated he has no problem with U.S. presidents meeting with leaders of countries like Russia, North Kora, and Cuba. "Peace and prosperity can't be secured without communication and engagement," he wrote, adding that one of the "most of appealing qualities" of libertarianism is "the desire to seek friendship and peace whenever possible."

But while "diplomacy and dialogue are good," Amash wrote, it's a "logical fallacy" to say that Trump's performance at the press conference was good as well. Oppposing what Trump said doesn't make a person "pro-war or anti-Trump," Amash added. "No, some of us are just concerned about the bizarre behavior of our president at a press conference."

The libertarian-leaning Republican went on to argue that the press conference did not accomplish its goal of "bringing America and Russia closer." Instead, it left Amash thinking "something is not right here." That's because Trump's performance made him "appear subordinate" to Putin, Amash said.

Amash said he wasn't sure what prompted Trump's embarrassing performance. But regardless, "the press conference was counterproductive to the goal of improving relations," he wrote. And though Trump later walked back on his remarks, Amash couldn't help but wonder why he didn't do so quicker if what he said was "simply a misstatement."

Next, Amash explained why it's perfectly fine for libertarians to take issue with Trump's remarks. "To suggest that anyone critical of the president's conduct opposes diplomacy is to employ a strawman argument. It's virtue signaling, not libertarianism," he said. Then, he noted that opposing how Trump is dealing with Putin does not make one "a Deep State anti-Trump neocon warmonger, etc."

Amash also criticized the tendency among some libertarians to defend Trump for the sake of "owning the neocons," adding that it's harmful to the libertarian movement when people connect libertarian principles to the "failings" of Trump. "When a libertarian's political prime directive becomes 'owning the neocons' (or 'owning the libs') rather than advancing libertarian ideals, then that person undermines libertarianism as a philosophy," he said.

The Michigan representative may have been taking a shot at Sen. Rand Paul (R–Ky.), a fellow libertarian-leaning Republican who was one of the few politicians to defend Trump in the aftermath of his meeting and press conference with Putin.

Amash also pointed out other negative effects of Trump's press conference. Not only did it "further isolate our country from Russia," he said, but it's led many people to "rally around" the FBI, despite the agency's "dubious track record and unconstitutional activities, particularly with respect to the #4thAmendment." The press conference will also likely lead to "more ineffectual sanctions bills and resolutions of condemnation against Russia," Amash added, "which will serve primarily to stunt further efforts at diplomacy and dialogue."

Amash concluded by calling on libertarians to be "smarter and more effective in our approach." Instead of "Acting like partisans," libertarians should "Stand strong on your principles; you'll find most Americans standing with you."

Photo Credit: KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS/Newscom

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  • Tom Bombadil||

    If exposing Hillary to be a lying cunt is tampering with the election, ok, I concede the point.

  • DPICM||

    But what is the point to concede? That a press conference went badly? OK, so what?

    I'll admit, I'm not fully up to speed on this latest outrage, but I thought the treason talk was related to some statement Trump made about not believing his intelligence agencies. Do the intelligence agencies no longer fall under the executive branch and Trump's authority? Is their function no longer to provide information to inform Trump's decision making? Did we pass a law saying that it is no longer Trump's prerogative to disbelieve the information they feed him, or ignore it even if he believes it because he has different policy objectives? Have the intelligence agencies shown themselves to have a markedly better track record in their predictive abilities since the missed 9/11, bungled us into Iraq, turned Syria-Libya into an ISIS state, missed numerous obvious warning signs of recent domestic terror attacks, etc.?

    I'm not attacking you, I'm just pointing out that I don't really understand why you would concede anything or what it is that you're supposed to be conceding.

  • rocks||

    Given the levels of TDS that democrats, the media, never-trumpers (and reason) have forced on everyone 24x7 nonstop for years now, Trump probably could have done something blatantly illegal with Putin on live news and most people would not care and would still vote for him. Everyone would just assume it was more hysterics. That is where we are.

    For this press conference, well I've heard plenty that he committed treason against America this week. But when I watched it the only thing I saw was Trump not actively trying to start WWIII. Lot's of "we'll get back to you" type responses to putin's requests. But treason.

    I can't wait till Trump gets over 400 EC votes in 2020.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Your assessment of the number of backwoods bigots, stale-thinking malcontents, and superstitious goobers in America differs from mine.

    Trump made a three-cushion bank shot I 2016. I doubt there are enough disaffected, can't-keep-up yahoos to enable him to win with minority support again.

  • rocks||

    You are a "Reverend" of what exactly? Because your hate is the exact opposite of what Jesus preached.

  • Moo Cow||

    Lulz.

  • Mark22||

    Trump made a three-cushion bank shot I 2016. I doubt there are enough disaffected, can't-keep-up yahoos to enable him to win with minority support again.

    You are certainly working hard to hand Trump another win. As a long time former Democrat, I won't vote for Democrats again until they unequivocally kick out "backwoods bigots, stale-thinking malcontents, and superstitious" jerks like you.

  • Just Say'n||

    Some thinly veiled attacks against Rand and Massie.

    Whenever you get a donation from the Kochs is there a clause that you must smear the Pauls at least once a year or something?

  • Calidissident||

    That's seriously the best you got? A "KOCHZ!" reference that (if you modified the second part of it) could have been lifted from a HuffPo comment?

  • Ron||

    His behavior was no more week than that of Obama's or Hilllary's or the last Bush so it is not all that unusual and still not praising or even criticizing our own DOJ,FBI,CIA is not really a treasonous. Do to historical precedent it can't be classified as Bizzare.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    You're full of shit. Trump may as well pulled Putin's dick out and sucked it on live TV.

  • Flenser||

    So he was using the "Obama doctrine" you say?

  • rocks||

    Trump didn't bow down low enough as Obama always did, that is what you morons are really upset about.

  • NoVaNick||

    But Putin is uncircumcised, so that would be a no-go for Trump

  • DesigNate||

    Do you trust the IC now, even after lying is into Iraq?

  • Mark22||

    You're full of shit. Trump may as well pulled Putin's dick out and sucked it on live TV.

    So you're saying that Trump is a power bottom and to your bigoted little mind that's a bad thing. Shrug.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Get an education, Ron. Start with standard English.

    Perhaps work on developing some character while you're at it.

    Carry on, clinger.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Treasonous traitor.

  • Flenser||

    Amash is all over the place with his comments on this.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Ask an educated person to explain this for you.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    What Kirkland didn't say was that he does that all the time.

    (the educated person is his senile mother, who is still better company than Kirkland despite her lack of bowel control and mental inhibitions)

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    That which vexes faux libertarians and bigoted, anti-social right-wingers is that of which I am most proud.

    Carry on, clingers.

  • Citizen X||

    Your Aspergers and your offputtingly-extensive repertoire of anime knowledge?

  • Cynical Asshole||

    I thought it would be his ability to hold to a clearly demented belief that everyone who posts here is Cpl. Klinger from M*A*S*H and his inability to spell his name correctly (with a K, not a C).

  • juris imprudent||

    Artie is the fauxest of libertarians. Hint: the Rev gives away the game.

  • Sarcastro!||

    He is in fact the fauxest. He was a commenter for a very long time at Volokh, and has attempted to reinvent himself as a libertarian. A glance at any of his posting history there makes it clear he is obviously lying about his libertarian credentials.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    I learned I was a libertarian at Volokh's place, where everyone is a libertarian. Or, at worst, "libertarianish."

    I'm beginning to reconsider after spending time here, where no one is a libertarian.

    Carry on, clingers.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Hey, I tried to get you on Hihn's list last night.

  • Flenser||

    Ok, explain it to me.

  • Flenser||

    I guess he's not going to explain why Amash is all over the place with his comments on this.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Ask an educated person to explain this for you.

    That's why no one would ask Arthur L. Hicklib.

  • Mark22||

    Ask an educated person to explain this for you.

    We should all bow to our betters who lord over us with their impressive titles! Kirkland apparently thinks we're still living in an aristocracy!

  • KevinP||

    This just in...

    Obama cyber chief confirms 'stand down' order against Russian cyberattacks in summer 2016


    Quote:
    The Obama White House's chief cyber official testified Wednesday that proposals he was developing to counter Russia's attack on the U.S. presidential election were put on a "back burner" after he was ordered to "stand down" his efforts in the summer of 2016.
  • Citizen X||

    Obama: "Hold up, i just want to see how this plays out."

  • Tom Bombadil||

    I bet he called it his 'trump card'.

  • Jerryskids||

    And why did he issue the stand-down order? Because he thought the Russian "meddling" was not a big deal or because he knew She was connected to it? In either case, I don't think the Russian meddling was a big deal, I'm pretty sure most countries do what they can to influence elections amongst both their friends and their enemies. Hell, Hillary was touting how many foreign leaders had implicitly or explicitly endorsed her - how was that not an attempt to influence the election by foreigners? But Trump isn't helping his case much by constantly bringing up the subject, how can it not be a big deal if Trump talks about it every single damn day? You're not very well making America great again by going to foreign countries and talking shit about America. There are times you back your team's play even if you don't agree with it because showing a united front is important, too. And as far as Trump talking about how having good relations with Russia is better than having bad relations - you have to consider at what cost. What kind of Genius Negotiator makes it plain that "good relations" is his top priority? What happened to his "you're just a sad pathetic loser that nobody likes and I'm going to beat the hell out of you" talk that he uses with everybody else?

  • John||

    He issued the stand down order because they knew the Russian meddling was not a big deal and they rightfully didn't see stopping worth risking getting into some kind of a cyber pissing match with the Russians. I don't blame Obama or whoever made that decision one bit.

    You have to tolerate a certain amount of this nonsense to coexist with other great powers. The Soviets interfered with US domestic politics all over the place during the Cold War. And the US never said a word about it because we were not going to go to war over it. So, saying something just would have made us look weak after we didn't do anything about it.

    Mueller indicting Russians over this nonsense is completely irresponsible. The Russians now have an excuse to do the same thing to us. Mueller has put a target on the back of every American doing business in Russia. Russia can declare them to be CIA agents and indict them just like we are doing to their people. Does anything think that is going to end well?

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    If we were really concerned about russian meddling we would be digging through the funding and ties of all the environmental groups to russia. We would be investigating podesta's brother.

    We aren't.

  • John||

    Yes, we would. They are not concerned about it. But they want Trump to act concerned because it furthers their own political interests. The problem with that is that Trump whether they like it or not is President. And the President making an issue of something has real effects on the world. Basically, these fuckers are willing to risk a confrontation with Russia to advance their own domestic political fortunes. But somehow everyone telling them to fuck off are the real traitors.

  • Happy Chandler||

    You think Putin is waiting for American permission to corrupt the justice system? Have you not heard of the Magnitsky affair? The justice system of Russia is in the service of Putin's theft of resources, as the intelligence agencies, justice department, and mob are basically all the same.

    Bill Browder isn't in fear from his life because of indictments, which is the way Mueller can document his findings. He's not in fear because a Russian spy is in jail. He is in fear of his life because he is fighting in the memory of Sergei Magnitsky, who blew the whistle on hundreds of millions of dollars of government theft.

  • John||

    No, you fucking moron. The only thing that keeps Putin from fucking with Americans in Russia is the threat of the US doing the same to Russians in America. So, us doing that removes the threat and does nothing but embolden Putin to do the same. But, it won't be Mueller rotting in a Russian jail, so what does he care?

  • Nardz||

    Browder's not American - he gave up his US citizenship so he could get in on the rape of the Russian economy without being taxed on it. He's a deep state parasite whose family was deep into communism... like most of the deep state, they've simply rebranded themselves as "globalists"

  • Happy Chandler||

    He now is a British citizen. Their taxes are higher.

  • Happy Chandler||

    You think this is the leverage? I don't even know how to respond. Russia is a barely functioning economy. Putin has stolen whatever isn't nailed down. Sergei Magnitsky died in jail because he exposed some of this theft.

    The Magnitsky Act is so hated there because it prevents the Russian Oligarch's in Putin's sphere from laundering their money outside of Russia. That is our leverage. Money and access to US and European banking and real estate.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Bullshit. Magnitsky was Browder's accomplice. The Russian version of events is correct, and the US is lying, as per usual. The Russian economy is doing just fine. Per capita GDP has exploded about 14 times since Putin's election. Tax rates are below 20%. What's not to like, except sanctions?

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    You are an ignorant dolt. Every thing that Browder in his book accuses Putin of doing, is exactly what Browder was doing, Why would Putin allow some lowly detective chief to siphon of $100 million in taxes just to frame Browder? Browder's account makes no sense, unless you just switch out the names of the villains.

    Lee Stranahan has done some ground breaking work on this topic.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    What happened to his "you're just a sad pathetic loser that nobody likes and I'm going to beat the hell out of you" talk that he uses with everybody else?

    Because everybody else is a sad pathetic loser, not a "strong leader?"

  • John||

    Amish is typical of our political and media class in that he is a fucking moron who can't see the difference between words and reality. Trump has done all kinds of things to counter and contain Russia. He is sending arms to Ukraine, he is forcing Western Europe to spend more on defense, he is trying to get Germany to stop being dependent on Russian gas, he is rebuilding the American Navy and reorienting our military back towards Eastern Europe, just to name a few things. That is reality and what matters. What isn't real is what various heads of state say to each other in diplomatic press conferences. What Trump didn't do and what Amish wanted him to do, was stand up and try to humiliate Putin and get into a pissing match with him. What does Amish think that would have accomplished other than forcing Putin to respond and become more aggressive? Was Putin going to say he was sorry?

    Great powers screw with each other domestically all of the time. And they generally ignore it, because saying something and then not doing anything is worse than saying nothing. And unless Amish wants us to go to war with Russia, what does he think can be accomplished by saying something?

  • creech||

    I bet some commentators here could come up with retorts that Trump could have used that 1)didn't humiliate Putin, while 2)not appearing to throw U.S. intelligence agencies under the bus.

  • Eddy||

    "Few great powers can claim to be immune to the temptation of meddling in other countries' affairs."

    "The matter is under investigation and I don't wish to comment at this time."

    "In our relations with Russia we're looking to make things better for the future - if past problems recur we'll deal with them then."

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    How dare you provide examples of rational, Presidential types of responses. How are the H&R commenters supposed to argue incessantly over that?

    I expected more of you Eddy.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I like him better when he was still Eidde.

  • Eddy||

    Eddie's in the space-time continuum.

    (Douglas Adams joke)

  • John||

    Like what? Either it happened or it didn't. If it did, then Trump would have had to say so and it would have forced Putin to deny. Moreover, if it is the US government's position that they did this, what does Amish want us to do in response? Again, saying something about it and doing nothing makes us look really weak and just emboldens Putin. And if it didn't happen, then the intel community is wrong and you can't say so without throwing them under the bus.

    Lastly, fuck the IC. The IC has shown itself to be completely partisan and willing to undermine a lawfully elected President. They deserve to be thown under the bus.

  • jdd6y||

    Apparently, Trump is expected to blow the IC at every opportunity. The same IC that either deferred to a high level cabal of political actors, or, worse, was fully complicit in what was clearly abuse of the FISA powers to thwart the electorate. The IC cares about the IC. Reputation, perks, and contracts that they get when they retire. Isn't Clapper now a big time contractor? Trump should have ordered him debarred to do business with the CIA, etc.

  • John||

    It is pretty ironic to hear Amash, a guy who claims to be a civil libertarian, now whining that the President wasn't sufficiently deferential to the Intelligence community.

  • Juice||

    I don't see that above. Is there another place he said that?

  • DPICM||

    Maybe, but why shouldn't he throw the intelligence agencies under the bus when that is exactly what they are trying to do to him? He's the boss, if he wants to tell his subordinates they are out of line, he can. If he wants to do it publicly in hopes that shame may force them to correct themselves, while signaling to an adversary that he has no intention of creating a conflict over this, he can do that too.

  • DesigNate||

    Wait, we support the vast military-industrial-intelligence complex now?

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Why shouldn't Trump throw US Intel agencies under the bus?!?! Who the fuck do you think is behind the movement to remove him?

  • Eddy||

    I thought Amish were pacifists.

  • John||

    He is. And that makes the whole thing even worse. Amish would never support actually doing anything about this. He just wants the President to talk a bunch of meaningless shit to make Amish feel better.

  • Eddy||

    You see, you keep spelling his name "Amish" and I'm responding with a joke.

  • John||

    Whatever the fuck his name is it is beside the point.

  • Eddy||

    You've been on H&R long enough to know that all sorts of things can become relevant when there's a joke to be gotten out of it.

    Try this mnemonic device - just think of Justin as "Monster Amash" like in this video.

  • juris imprudent||

    One of the most enduring jokes actually is John's misspellings/malapropisms.

  • Holmes IV||

    Hi John. Can you provide a source for any of those statements? I am interested to learn about this.

  • Let freedom ring||

    Counter and contain Russia? Contain Russia? Oh yes, Russian troop movements within its own borders is aggression. I forgot.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Hey, John's back. I was wondering where you were the last week or so.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    I understand why some right-wing malcontents want to figuratively fellate Donald Trump -- after lifetimes of disaffection and anger, this is their last grasping chance to feel normal and believe they can stand against the tide of American progress.

    That these goobers congregate at an ostensibly libertarian website, however, is inexplicable.

  • DesigNate||

    Says the boring troll.

  • MikeP2||

    Why does anyone give a fack what Amash has to say about foreign affairs?

    he's 38, has no diplomatic experience, serves on no foreign affairs committees and was a domestic corporate lawyer before congress.

    Besides that he positions himself libertarianish, why is this even news?

  • Don't look at me.||

    He knows how to do the Twitter, and that's all is needed to put together a news article.

  • MikeP2||

    I'm not questioning Amash using Twitter. more power to him to do what he needs to further his reelection.

    But why in the world is this a 'Reason' article?

    Half the commenters here have more foreign affairs experience than Amash. Except for that bigoted reverend. Doubt he's every left his basement.

  • Don't look at me.||

    His use of Twitter is why it's an article. Most of the work is done for the " journalists ".

  • MikeP2||

    good point

  • Cathy L||

    Half the commenters here have more foreign affairs experience than Amash.

    Get it, because they were in the military! Which is super fucking libertarian!

  • John||

    Apparently being Libertarian makes one an expert on foreign affairs and actually living abroad and engaging in foreign affairs does not.

    Is that your final answer?

  • John||

    And nothing could be more Libertarian than to demand that the President blow the intelligence community at all times. Right Cathy?

  • Cathy L||

    No, John, the libertarian way is to defend him blowing autocrats.

  • John||

    So he must blow the intelligence community and believe anything they say if doing otherwise would defend autocrats? That is real libertarian.

  • Cathy L||

    Or, he could just not blow autocrats!

  • Pray for more atheism||

    What is "the libertarian way" Cathy?

  • Nardz||

    Why would you ask a Progressive that?

  • MikeP2||

    Why are you rambling about the military?

    My point was that Amash appears to have almost zero life experience in foreign affairs. I'm over a decade older, have spent significant time around the world conducting business, including months in Russia. I'm sure "half the commenters here" have similar chops.
    International diplomacy is complex and I know enough to know that I don't know enough. What has Amash done that gives him the chops to pontificate on this? Classic Dunning-Kruger effect....the same thing evident with you apparently.

  • Jerryskids||

    Because some of us don't judge the worth of what somebody's saying strictly on the lines of "if they talk nice about Dear Leader, they're wise and wonderful but if they dare criticize Him one little bit they're worthless pieces of shit".

  • MikeP2||

    so apparently you are in the "it's against Trump so I love it" camp?

    Merit does not matter. facts don't matter. But a politician speaking to your world view gives you a nice warm feeling inside?

    good luck with that.

  • Cathy L||

    Oh my god, the un-self-awareness

  • Cheap shot guy||

    No one cares about your nickname.

  • MikeP2||

    look in the mirror, Cathy. you are ridiculous.

  • jdd6y||

    At what point will any of these blowhards use the word "because." Trump's actions looked like a vassal state because what? Oh, he said so. That's just conclusory. Trump is supposed to humiliate Putin, who is an insecure shrimp, who has to play tough guy to stay in power? How would that be good? What outcome would that change and improve? Maybe Trump should have said things differently. But this is a "who cares?" Amash running his yap in this way just shows what a lightweight he is.

    As far as I know, nobody knows what was actually, meaningfully discussed in private. That would be the relevant information. Unfortunately, we don't get to know. Just like we don't get to know what 'evidence' the CIA/NSA/FBI have of "meddling."

    Election meddling? It never was an issue until it became Hillary's excuse. Didn't we largely invent the modern computer and the internet? So explain to me why we have such hackable systems? Shouldn't that be the issue? What are we doing to shift resources towards becoming the hardest country to hack? No, let's stay focused on fucking decorum.

    The US is in no danger of becoming a vassal to Russia anymore than it is Italy, which has a similarly sized economy. Russia is a corrupt, rentier economy with a declining population that has a lot of nukes.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "So explain to me why we have such hackable systems?"

    Because it's important that they be hackable.

    Look, the dirty secret of election security is that the worst threat to voting systems is the people running them. Nobody else is nearly as well placed to rig the results.

    And in America, the election machinery is run by partisans. One must presume, absent evidence to the contrary, that most of the election rigging favors whichever party dominates an area, and so isn't objectionable to that party.

    If the price of enabling domestic election hacking is that foreigners occasionally get a lick in, so be it. Cheap at twice the price. That's the reasoning here.

  • Happy Chandler||

    If you believe Huckabee Sanders, there was discussion about turning over an ambassador to questioning by the Russian intelligence agencies.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    If you believe Sarah Sanders, you deserve to live in an Ouachita Baptist-level world.

  • Let freedom ring||

    Even those who purport to defend Russia have to denigrate it.

  • Happy Chandler||

    I saw this tweet thread yesterday, and the first thing I thought was "He must read the Hit and Run comments!"

    I'm waiting for Just Sayin' to ask about Amash's war boner.

  • John||

    Why don't you tell us about your war boner? If you don't have one, then why do you want the US government to have one?

  • Happy Chandler||

    See, that is exactly what Amash was talking about. There are options that don't include war. Starting with a thorough investigation into what happened and how to prevent it. There is also a difference between being subservient and humiliating him. He walked in with the power of the office of the President. He disgraced that, again.

    What was accomplished in Helsinki?

  • John||

    We have been investigating for two years and have found exactly jack and shit. Beyond that, it either happened or it didn't. If it did happen, then what do you think should be done about it? Unless you plan to go to war, there isn't anything to be done about it. Either Amash just wants to President to talk shit about something that he will never take action over or risk nuclear war over something that has been going on for decades, made no difference in the election and that we are just as guilty of. Either way, him and you are a fucking moron.

    Lastly, it is more than a bit rich to hear you idiots claim that "it is this or war" is some kind of false dilemma after claiming just that when people opposed the Iran agreement. You are dumb as post but make up for it by being partisan and completely lacking any principles.

  • Happy Chandler||

    First, nobody made that claim about Iran. It was a choice of make the deal or let them become a nuclear power. Because of the deal, all their enriched uranium is out of the country. Because it was abrogated, Iran is free to resume enriching. Nice work following up your false dichotomy with a straw man. Do your logical fallacies come cheaper as a combo deal?

    The indictment laid out, in detail, with IP addresses, physical locations, and a detailed timeline who engaged in the theft of data, with the servers used, the money trail linking DCLeaks, Guccifer 2.0, the GRU, and Wikileaks. The investigation has identified to the Grand Jury a congressional candidate who requested and received stolen data from a foreign intelligence service. That's a federal crime. A spy is now in custody, with emails and messages directly tying her to foreign intelligence.

    That Russia is spying isn't a surprise. That people think we shouldn't investigate, arrest, and jail those spies because they are helpful to their partisan cause is astounding.

  • John||

    First, nobody made that claim about Iran. Obama claimed that.

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-.....lomacy-war

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....71dce49d4a

  • Happy Chandler||

    Those were the options to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. The third option was to allow Iran to go nuclear. I guess that's your preferred option? That's what Trump has chosen.

  • John||

    And the indictment is likely bullshit. The first indictments didn't even get the right names of the companies. They were made knowing they would never be contested in court. They are a publicity stunt. They are indictments of people that Mueller knows will never be brought before a court. The claims will never be tested. To believe them to be true is just partisan hack bullshit. Mueller has absolutely nothing. If he did, he would leak it. All he has is a bunch of bullshit ancillary crimes that have nothing to do with what he was charged to investigate.

  • Happy Chandler||

    You just believe that. That's the thing about conspiracy theories. Any evidence is just more evidence that it's a conspiracy.

    You think they just made up all the server records, the bitcoin transactions, and everything? That there is a vast conspiracy in the FBI and there's no leak (except Reality Winner, who leaked the details already...and she's in jail).

  • John||

    What conspiracy theory? Mueller's actions are known publicly. He has not indicted a single American on charges related to the election and he has only indicted Russians that he knows will never appear in court on such charges. The indictments are publicity stunts. He is indicting people that under normal circumstances would be unindicted co-conspirators. The facts are what they are. There is no conspiracy theory needed.

  • Happy Chandler||

    Is the detailed information in the indictment accurate?

    It is not unusual to indict foreigners that you don't have the ability to arrest. If you don't think more is coming, well, that's what Nixon's defenders thought, too.

  • John||

    It is totally unusual to indict foreigners that will never be brought to justice. You are just wrong in saying that. And what is wrong in the indictments? Well, one of the companies indicted didn't exist at the time of the election. That is one example. Beyond that, it is the government's burden to prove their case. There is no reason to believe any of it is true or accurate until it has been proven so in court. And the fact that Mueller did the indictments knowing he would never have to do so is very strong evidence it is all bullshit and certainly good reason to not take it as true.

  • Happy Chandler||

    You're parroting the lawyer's unsupported claim.

    As to the claim that Concord didn't exist during the last U.S. presidential election: There are myriad old references to Concord Catering in Russian media, and press releases about Concord events and openings in Russia say that it was founded in 1996. It also still seems to be operational today.
  • Happy Chandler||

  • Happy Chandler||

  • Happy Chandler||

    Is the detailed information in the indictment accurate?

    It is not unusual to indict foreigners that you don't have the ability to arrest. If you don't think more is coming, well, that's what Nixon's defenders thought, too.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    And yes, I do believe that they'd make up all the server records, since they (FBI) has never seen them, they were only examined by CrowdStrike, a DNC controlled company.

    This is all public, and well reported. You are listening to too much CNN.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    To believe them to be true is just partisan hack bullshit.

    This is how I like my political opponents -- half-educated, confident, backward, and wrong.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Dumbass. William Binney debunked all of that bullshit in the indictment. The servers were not hacked, the info was downloaded locally, as shown by the metadata. Guccifer 2.0 is irrelevant and had zero to do with any of this, he's a CIA paid asset. Can't prove shit about the GRU, and Mueller knows that he won't ever have to.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    You're fairly new here so I will explain H&R war logic. This is it in a nutshell:

    The Obama/NATO Libyan "war" was just as bad if now worse than the Iraq War. Because Kenyan something something. Really it was WORSE than Iraq all around.

    Also Obama drew a red line in Syria and should have gone to war proving him a pussy to "libertarians" but his droning and killing of bin Laden were proof he didn't deserve a peace prize.

  • John||

    The Obama/NATO Libyan "war" was just as bad if now worse than the Iraq War.

    It sure as hell was if you were a Libyan. Yes, shreek you are a racist fuck who think war is okay as long as only brown people die. We know that.

    But why don't you tell us more about how angry you are at Obama for allowing the Russians to throw the election against Hillary.

  • Mithrandir||

    Yes, shreek you are a racist fuck who think war is okay as long as only brown people die. We know that.
    That's a weak fucking argument here.

  • John||

    It is true. The only reason Libya is a better war than Iraq is that fewer Americans died. Overall, both conflicts resulted in enormous misery for the populations of both countries. Iraq, at least has some upside in that Iraq is today somewhat of a functioning country in a way Libya isn't. The Libyan war destroyed a stable country and replaced it with a militia run slave trading hell hole. Anyone who says the Libya war was a better war is only saying so because fewer Americans lost their lives and by implication, other people losing their lives doesn't matter.

  • Cathy L||

    Anyone who says the Libya war was a better war is only saying so because fewer Americans lost their lives and by implication, other people losing their lives doesn't matter.

    Fewer Libyans than Iraqis died as well.

  • John||

    Only if you count the deaths during the actual campaign. If you count the deaths that have occurred in the violence and chaos that has resulted since, it is a lot closer. Libya remains in chaos. The butcher's bill for that idiotic campaign is not yet complete.

    I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could defend the Libya campaign or consider it anything other than a moral and strategic catastrophe.

    http://www.smallarmssurvey.org.....-Libya.pdf

  • Cathy L||

    I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could defend the Libya campaign or consider it anything other than a moral and strategic catastrophe.

    Did you see someone doing that?

  • Happy Chandler||

    Taking the highest bar for every year in Figure 1 there comes up less than 30k civilian deaths. Recent years, the high estimate (and they admit it is impossible to delineate between war deaths and general violent deaths) has been ~2k.

    Iraq had an order of magnitude higher, Iraq Body Count has documented at least 181,000 civilian deaths. Others not officially attributed probably are double that. More people are still dying in Iraq today than in Libya, even going by the high estimates you provided.

    Libya was already in civil war. Many of the deaths were already happening. Iraq was not. The deaths were entirely attributable to the invasion.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Libya's civil war it was "already in" was manufactured by western intel.

  • Calidissident||

    Your link does not support the notion that casualties were as high in Libya as they were in Iraq.

  • Happy Chandler||

    1) Libya was in civil war before intervention. It was not a stable country. Iraq was a stable country.
    2) An order of magnitude fewer civilian casualties have occurred in Libya.
    3) The counterfactual is unknown. What would have happened in Libya if the international community had not supported the rebels? Would it be another Syria, where Obama was castigated for not doing enough?

    The options there were crap and shit. Go in and try to manage atrocities, and likely fail. Stay out and watch atrocities spin out? Either way, it was shit. Trying to pin Libya on American actions is just terrible history.

  • John||

    1) Libya was in civil war before intervention. It was not a stable country.

    A civil war that Gaddafi was winning and was going to end with him still in power had we not intervened. Our intervention prevented Gaddaffi from winning and created the chaos that resulted after his death.

    And we don't know the counterfactual about Iraq either. Chances are Iraq would have turned into Syria after Saddam died, which was going to happen within a few years. So, you can't play the but it could have been worse card in Libya without also saying the same about Iraq.

    Anyone who defends the intervention in Libya is just admitting that they will defend anything Obama did. An enormous strategic blunder that accomplished none of the goals it was supposed to and destabilized not just Libya but large portions of central Africa thanks to it unleashing jihadists from Libya there.

  • Happy Chandler||

    You said it was a stable country. Putting down a rebellion through death squads is not a stable country, and blaming the war on US assistance is ridiculous.

    I'm not defending the military action. I didn't support it at the time, and think it was probably wrong. However, there was an argument for it. Combating death squads is a good thing. Military action is a bad thing. It was a shit show either way.

    Iraq is a whole different bag. More Iraqis have died, more from direct US military action and more from the unrest that has been unleashed for a decade and a half. And, there wasn't even a valid argument for that war, at that time.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Would it be another Syria, where Obama was castigated for not doing enough?

    LOL, what the fuck is this revisionist history? The primary reason Syria is in a state of perpetual civil war right now is because the administration and senile fucks like McCain were encouraging it to happen, to the point of arming the people fighting against Assad.

    Trying to pin Libya on American actions is just terrible history.

    Oh, bullshit. The excuse given for military intervention in Syria was to "prevent atrocities". Funny how that involved providing air cover for the rebels all the way into Tripoli.

  • DesigNate||

    Libya was bad for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is that he didn't have congressional approval.

    And newsflash, most everyone here that's not a Democrat loving douchebag are anti-interventionist so they don't think we should have been involved in Syria either. We all laughed at Obama's ineptitude with his ridiculous "line in the sand" comment.

    But then, you're not any kind of classical liberal, you're just a war mongering piece of shit.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    Joe, Joe, Joe -- you do not need to quote a tweet in your paragraph, immediately followed by the full tweet itself. Breaking the text quote into pieces separated by a few of your own words does not hide what you have done.

    Are you paid by the word?

  • Don't look at me.||

    I hate articles made up of copy pasted tweets. Sloppy lazy work at best.

  • Jerryskids||

    Some people have browsers that automatically block any shit from facebook, twitter, et al so they just see a blank box where the imbedded shit is.

  • Rhywun||

    *raises hand*

    Well, I had to install a plugin first but yeah, I don't see tweets.

    *fiddles*

    Holy crap, that is a lot of tweets.

    *fiddles some more*

    Whew, much better.

  • Eddy||

    OK, I'll make an acknowledgement - I'm not 100% up to speed on the nuances of US/Russian relations.

    But I'll make a guess about Trump.

    Maybe the accusations of Russian influence, combined with the assertions of his illegitimacy as President, have gotten to him. So his behavior toward Russia is affected by his reaction to what his domestic enemies say about him and Russia.

    This could mean that if his domestic enemies call Putin a bad guy, he will go out of his way not to call Putin a bad guy. And if Putin is accused of rigging US elections to make Trump win, Trump will react by suggesting Putin didn't even attempt to meddle with the elections.

    The other way it could work, of course, is that he does some stuff to prove he's *not* a Russian stooge.

    "After I press this button we'll see who's the vassal, ha ha!"

    Fortunately, the latter doesn't seem to have happened yet.

  • Happy Chandler||

    So he is so thin skinned that he puts his feelings above the security of the American people??? We can't have someone who would sell out to the country because his feelings are hurt.

  • Eddy||

    I am simply venturing a guess - I haven't actually seen the Secret Report which analyzes, authoritatively, Trump's motives.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Others here appear to have found such a report. Or so they would have you believe.

  • Jerryskids||

    Trump's not thin-skinned, his responding to every little criticism with insults and twitter blasts proves he's a fighter who won't back down from any fight, no matter how small or petty. If he were thin-skinned he'd be responding to every little criticism with insults and twitter blasts as if he were small and petty and lacks the judgment to pick his battles. See the difference?

  • Rhywun||

    A lot of people seem to think that calling Putin a liar to his face would have been totally in line with protecting the security of the American people.

  • John||

    That is because they are idiots who think words are the same thing as reality.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    A lot of those people have watched too many teevee shows and movies where there's no consequences for grown adults acting like a sassy teenager. They don't seem to get that if you're going to call out the leader of one of the most powerful countries in the world to their face, you better have all the cards and leverage before you do.

    Just because Kerry Washington gets away with acting like a mouthy bitch on Scandal doesn't mean that's how things are going to work in real life.

  • JFree||

    A lot of those people have watched too many teevee shows and movies where there's no consequences for grown adults acting like a sassy teenager.

    So are you talking about Trump or the people criticizing Trump?

  • John||

    Yes Jfree, you hate Trump. We get that. You have sufficiently virtue signaled on this thread. Now, how about thinking a little bit.

  • Calidissident||

    I love how it's only virtue signaling when someone criticizes Trump. Incessantly supporting Trump no matter what is not virtue signaling in any way, no siree! Showing how much you hate the libs and the "elites" isn't virtue signaling!

    I suppose we're should honestly believe that the same people who bitched about Obama's "apology tour" are defending Trump's press conference for sincere and principled reasons.

  • John||

    What is virtue signaling is people who just insult Trump without making an argument about why you think he is wrong. And that is what Jfree is doing here. It is not virtue signaling to give an opinion and explain why you have it. What is virtue signaling is saying how much you hate Trump or insulting Trump without giving any reason why you think he is wrong in this particular instance.

  • DesigNate||

    Why can't it be both?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Maybe people thought "consequences for Trump" meant "become President of the United States" and thought that Hollywood was right after all.

  • John||

    I think that he wants to get things done. If he admits that all of this nonsense is true, then he has to do something about it or look weak and ineffective. He also has to figure out a way to contain and confront Putin without putting Putin into a corner such that he feels he must take some kind of aggressive action to save face. So, what do you do if you are Trump and are asked about this? The last thing you want to do is say that it is true and put Putin and you on the spot. If it is true, then what is the US going to do about what amounts to an act of war?

    You can say "I don't know" but that then puts Putin on the spot. He is, of course, going to deny it and you saying "I don't know" is effectively calling him a liar. So, Trump says that it isn't true and the IC is full of shit. Understand, this allows Putin to keep face with the Russian public and makes it a lot easier for Putin not to respond to all of the other things Trump is doing to confront and contain Russia. It pisses the IC off, but the IC is utterly partisan and corrupt. So, why should Trump give a shit about that or even see it as a downside?

  • JFree||

    Yes of course. Trump is playing 15 dimensional chess and the world of his non-supporters just doesn't realize it.

    The alternative of course is that Trump has the attention span of a 2 year old - and the only thing he wants is to be the focus of 100% of everyone's attention.

  • John||

    No. There is nothing 15 dimensional about it, unless you are an idiot. Trump did exactly what any other sane leader in his position would have done.

    He did the right thing. If you disagree, explain why. Virtue signaling by explaining how much you hate Trump doesn't do that. It just wastes everyone's time.

  • JFree||

    He did the right thing. If you disagree, explain why.

    I did explain why he was pwned - in the FIRST thread about that conference days ago. BEFORE he asserted that he misspoke - which apparently doesn't indicate to his supporters that he screwed up but rather that he's a complete genius.

    I've avoided most of the threads since that first one. I find Trump stupid. I find his supporters boring AND stupid. So at this point, all I'm doing is cracking jokes - and laughing at people like you who seem to obsessed about defending him always and everywhere.

  • JFree||

    When will people stop using Twitter as a way to voice anything complex?

  • John||

    When they get smarter, which means never.

  • Eddy||

    I got something which blows #Newtonianism out of the water - check out my forthcoming paper. /AlEinstein

    Gonne prove my #lasttheorem conclusively as soon as I finish arguing with this guy on Twitter who thinks Picard is better than Kirk. /Fermat

  • H. Farnham||

    As soon as the next social media platform supplants it. My money's on an MSN Messenger resurgence.

  • Rhywun||

    ICQ or GTFO

  • DesigNate||

    Shut up, it's all about AIM.

  • juris imprudent||

    If there is an audience...

  • Rhywun||

    Trump's performance made him "appear subordinate" to Putin, Amash said.

    I would love to hear Amash's - or anyone's - take on what the president was supposed to say.

  • John||

    Me too. They never seem to get to that part. But, my sense is they wanted him to get up and call Putin a liar and accuse him of acts of war against the United States. But remember, Trump is the crazy one who is going to get us into world war III.

  • Jerryskids||

    Sometimes saying nothing is the best thing you can say. Who the hell put a gun to Trump's head and made him say "I trust Putin more than I trust my own intelligence officials." Nobody, that's who - because you don't have to put a gun to Trump's head to make him say stupid shit, he's incapable of shutting the hell up. Whether or not you trust your own intelligence officials (and he shouldn't, but he does) you don't have to stand there next to a dirtbag like Putin and say you trust him. That's just stupid. Unless you've got an assassination team set up and are planning your "who, me? I liked the guy!" defense.

    And there's really no question Russia "interfered" in our elections, the question is whether or not it was in any meaningful way. And the answer to that is almost certainly "No". When you're indicting people for posting shit on Facebook "in violation of election laws" well, fuck you, that's American laws and, despite the fact that the Justice Department thinks the US has universal jurisdiction, foreigners using the worldwide web don't have to give two shits about US law. If that's the best you got, you ain't got shit.

  • Rhywun||

    you don't have to put a gun to Trump's head to make him say stupid shit

    That's certainly true. But he couldn't say nothing - the fucking media asked him point blank. I believe the skill he's lacking is the skill of the bullshit artist. His predecessor could surely give him some pointers on that.

    And there's really no question Russia "interfered" in our elections, the question is whether or not it was in any meaningful way. And the answer to that is almost certainly "No".

    Nor is there any proof that Trump was involved.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Whether or not you trust your own intelligence officials (and he shouldn't, but he does) you don't have to stand there next to a dirtbag like Putin and say you trust him. That's just stupid.

    We've had at least three administrations now demonstrate that they don't have the chops to handle Putin or Russia in a post-Cold War context. Dubya said he "looked into Putin's soul", Obama couldn't figure out whether to "reset" relations with Russia and mock Romney for having a 1980s foreign policy outlook or treat Russia like it was the 1960s, and Trump's playing a no-win game where he looks complicit in "stealing" an election if he doesn't further damage relations with a global nuclear superpower.

  • Mark22||

    We've had at least three administrations now demonstrate that they don't have the chops to handle Putin or Russia in a post-Cold War context.

    What's there to "handle"? Putin wants to rule Russia and dominate Europe. We can't do anything about either of those anyway, and they are of little consequence to us.

    Putin is only important if you suffer from the mistaken belief that it is the job of the US to bring the light of democracy and liberty to the rest of the world; it is not.

  • Nardz||

    REPORTER, AP: President Trump, you first. Just now, President Putin denied having anything to do with the election interference in 2016. Every U.S. intelligence agency has concluded that Russia did. My first question for you sir is, who do you believe? My second question is would you now, with the whole world watching, tell President Putin, would you denounce what happened in 2016 and would you warn him to never do it again?
    TRUMP: So let me just say that we have two thoughts. You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why haven't they taken the server? Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the Democratic National Committee?
    I've been wondering that. I've been asking that for months and months and I've been tweeting it out and calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I want to know where is the server and what is the server saying?
    With that being said, all I can do is ask the question.

  • Nardz||

    My people came to me, Dan Coates, came to me and some others they said they think it's Russia. I have President Putin. He just said it's not Russia.
    I will say this: I don't see any reason why it would be. But I really do want to see the server but I have, I have confidence in both parties.
    I really believe that this will probably go on for a while but I don't think it can go on without finding out what happened to the server. What happened to the servers of the Pakistani gentleman that worked on the DNC?
    Where are those servers? They're missing. Where are they? What happened to Hillary Clinton's emails? 33,000 emails gone, just gone. I think in Russia they wouldn't be gone so easily.
    I think it's a disgrace that we can't get Hillary Clinton's thirty three thousand e-mails.
    I have great confidence in my intelligence people but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today and what he did is an incredible offer.
    He offered to have the people working on the case come and work with their investigators, with respect to the 12 people. I think that's an incredible offer. Ok? Thank you.

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    Where is the server? I want to know where is the server and what is the server saying?

    I wanna know where the gold at!

  • Happy Chandler||

    The fucking server conspiracy? Are you kidding?

    The FBI got a forensic copy of all the required computers. That's more valuable than the physical server. It's standard procedure for victims of hacking.

    The detail and specificity of the indictments show that there wasn't anything to be gained from taking physical possession of the server. There were logs of where the data went, the logs from the servers rented by the Russians, the actual actions by the Russians, and a money trail, chat histories, and search histories. They have the names, locations, IP addresses.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    The FBI got what they/we/you were told was a forensic copy of all the required computers.

    William Binney, formerly the highest ranking civilian at the NSA, head of technical operations, whistleblower, disagrees with your analysis. I suggest you reconsider.

  • Happy Chandler||

    The fucking server conspiracy? Are you kidding?

    The FBI got a forensic copy of all the required computers. That's more valuable than the physical server. It's standard procedure for victims of hacking.

    The detail and specificity of the indictments show that there wasn't anything to be gained from taking physical possession of the server. There were logs of where the data went, the logs from the servers rented by the Russians, the actual actions by the Russians, and a money trail, chat histories, and search histories. They have the names, locations, IP addresses.

  • Nardz||

    "I trust Putin more than I trust my own intelligence officials."

    Didn't see that in the transcript. Of course, that's what the McCarthyist media is reporting it as, but Trump's actual statements were equivocal. He throws a lot of shade at the IC, but also says he believes them. He says Putin strongly denied it, but not that he necessarily believes him - just that he doesn't not believe him.

  • Demosthenes3000||

    Thanks, I was about to post the transcript, too.

    So, after reading the "gotcha" question and answer, where is the treason? Why does that statement cause congresscritters to call for a coup?

  • DesigNate||

    Wait, that was the actual transcript?

    Why the fuck is anyone losing their shit over this?

  • Happy Chandler||

    My first question for you, sir, is who do you believe? My second question is would you now with the whole world watching tell President Putin — would you denounce what happened in 2016 and would you warn him to never do it again?

    TRUMP: So let me just say that we have two thoughts. You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why haven't they taken the server? Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the democratic national committee? I've been wondering that. I've been asking that for months and months and I've been tweeting it out and calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I want to know, where is the server and what is the server saying? With that being said, all I can do is ask the question. My people came to me, Dan Coats came to me and some others and said they think it's Russia.

    I have President Putin. He just said it's not Russia. I will say this. I don't see any reason why it would be, but I really do want to see the server [Trump later said he used the wrong word, claiming he meant to say "I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russia"].

    He, as head of the executive branch, when asked if he believed his intelligence services, had only criticisms of how they acted. He asks questions in public that he probably has received classified answers for. He badmouths the investigators working for him, and praises Putin.

  • Happy Chandler||

    Rest of the answer:

    But I have confidence in both parties. I really believe that this will probably go on for a while, but I don't think it can go on without finding out what happened to the server. What happened to the servers of the Pakistani gentleman that worked on the DNC? Where are those servers? They're missing. Where are they? What happened to Hillary Clinton's emails? 33,000 emails gone — just gone. I think in Russia they wouldn't be gone so easily. I think it's a disgrace that we can't get Hillary Clinton's 33,000 emails. So I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that president Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today. And what he did is an incredible offer. He offered to have the people working on the case come and work with their investigators, with respect to the 12 people. I think that's an incredible offer. Okay thank you.

    More badmouthing the intelligence agencies.

  • Nardz||

    Progs are so inconsistent.

    Above, HC says that while he disagreed with the Libya war, at least there was an argument for it.
    In contrast, HC then says about Iraq "there wasn't even a valid argument for that war, at that time."
    HC then goes on to lament Trump "badmouthing the intelligence agencies."

    So there wasn't even a valid argument for Iraq, despite the WMD related intel at the time, yet now the IC is sacrosanct?

  • Happy Chandler||

    If the IC justified the Iraq War, why did Doug Feith have to set up a parallel system to fix the intelligence? The intelligence community was given an answer and told to justify it. Cheney knew the intelligence was crap, because he arranged for it to be. The anti-war left knew it as Powell got in front of the UN. The anti-war right hopped on their unicorn with the Easter Bunny to get some freedom fries. The unclassified NIE makes it clear that the results were skewed.

    That's different than the case where they tell the politicians what they don't want to hear.

  • DesigNate||

    If there's one thing we've learned over the last two plus years, it's that Trump sincapable of following that saying nothing axiom.

  • Happy Chandler||

    Instead of saying "I think the United States has been foolish" (actual quote from press conference), it should have been more along the lines of the relationship has suffered because Russia has taken illegal steps including invading another country, shooting down an airliner, and poisoning dissidents in foreign countries. President Putin has infringed on the freedom of his own people and violated international laws. When Russia acts in accordance with international law, we can work to repair the relationship.

    I didn't realize that "America First" was short for "Blame America First."

  • Happy Chandler||

    Also, he threw out a word salad of conspiracy theories that don't make sense.

    The server issue. He's the head of the executive branch. He has access to the reports. He has access to the head of Justice and the head of the FBI. He can call anyone in. They will all tell him the server is irrelevant.

    He threw out the 30,000 emails. What do the non-government related emails on Hillary's server when she was SoS have to do with the hacking of the campaign? He steps up, looking like a clueless guy throwing out Infowars level conspiracy theories, in front of an international audience? WTF is that???

    He should have represented the strongest country. He should not have attacked his country. He should not have blamed the investigation.

    The relationship is the fault of Putin. He's a criminal who kills and locks up his citizens, murders people overseas, and steals wildly. He should have reiterated the goals and processes of the Magnitsky Act.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    > They will all tell him the server is irrelevant.

    Bullshit. The server is VERY relevant.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    I've heard it said that anyone who disapproves of what took place at the press conference is pro-war or anti-Trump.
    ...
    Acting like partisans—pushing demagoguery and tribalism—is a self-defeating proposition. Stand strong on your principles; you'll find most Americans standing with you.

    I wonder if Amash reads the comments here?

    Christ, what a cuck. /sarc

  • Juice||

    Amash is treating Trump like someone to be taken seriously, which is a mistake. But I do like that he used it as a segue into a much more useful topic, which is telling libertarians to act like the adults in the room.

  • Michael Cook||

    Synopsis to date: During the Obama administration Russia under Putin wanted two things very badly. The Kremlin wanted the Uranium One deal to be slicked through with no fuss, and a few years later Putin very much wanted the Iran Nuclear deal to be done by Obama, because everything about that worked to Russia's commercial advantage in selling weapons and to Putin's common foreign policy goals with Iran and Syria.

    Obama was able to deliver the Putin wish list with the help of Brenan and Clapper in our intelligence agencies making all their recommendations come out correctly, and then Loretta Lynch, Mueller, Comey, McCabe, Strzok and the rest of the crew made darn sure that the FBI only pretended to investigate the hard core, cash-flowing lobbying that Russian entities and lobbyists did in America to insure that Uranium One and Iran Nuclear Deal went down.

    In 1978 the USA the USA mined 50% of the Uranium we needed. We made up the balance by importing from Canada. By 2017 our domestic production is down to 5%. The Canadian ore goes to Russia, which with China has cornered the market.

    In 2016 Obama received intelligence reports that the Russians were meddling in our election. He probably thought, so what, they will just be helping Hillary. He was partly right.

  • Happy Chandler||

    Wow. That is all astoundingly wrong.

  • John||

    You are the dumbest and craziest person on the internet Hihn. Only the Rev might be dumber but no one is crazier.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Oh, shit. I didn't know that I was wasting my time responding to Hihn/HappyChandler.

    Thanks for the heads up.

  • John||

    Why is that? What is wrong about it other than it says something you don't like?

  • Happy Chandler||

    1) The Uranium One deal was not of great strategic importance to Putin.
    2) The Iran deal could be helpful to Russia, but Iran is a competitor for oil exports. Not top ten.

    No mention of the Magnitsky Act, which is one of Putin's top priorities.
    The totally irrelevant statistic about how much uranium is mined in the US.
    Ignoring the fact that during the campaign, Trump promised Russia a good deal.

  • Mark22||

    Ignoring the fact that during the campaign, Trump promised Russia a good deal.

    And therefore Putin bet on who everybody thought was a sure loser? That makes no sense.

    Putin released stuff on Hillary because he assumed Hillary would be president and he wanted to create a bit of chaos. Trump winning simply wasn't in the cards. And Democrats are helping Putin even more with their conspiracy theories that put birtherism to shame.

    And no matter what Putin intended to do, the information released on Hillary was accurate and US voters didn't vote for her because they recognized her for the corrupt, lying manipulator that she is, based on her own E-mails.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    > Putin released stuff on Hillary

    Again, bullshit. The DNC emails were obtained by Seth Rich, Assange practically admitted as much, plus it fits with the forensics (see William Binney) of the metadata.

  • Egypt Steve||

    It's past time to punish Rainier for stealing Grace Kelley from MGM. But revenge is a dish best served cold.

  • creech||

    Nicely done. Someone finally noted that the U.S. military budget is for world wide defense, two ocean blue navy, etc.
    Of course we spend proportionally more than, say, Poland or Italy, nation's which only have Baltic, Med and one border to worry about. This is not to say NATO nations might not be pulling their fair share of European defense, but it is unlikely they should spend as much as "the world's policeman" does.

  • DesigNate||

    But then people don't get to really bitch about us being "the world's policeman".

    Not that I'm advocating we continue being that.

  • Egypt Steve||

    Wait, I'm sorry, is there a school of thought out there that Donald J. "Alien Internment Camp" Trump is a libertarian? "Libertine," sure. But "Libertarian"? With "Maximum" Jeff Sessions as AG? I don't fucking think so.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    He's said some nice things about Ron Paul, and he's more libertarian than, say, Hitlery. For the first time in my 6 decades, there actually was a dimes worth of difference between the "two" candidates.

  • higgyb||

    Reason is utterly unreasonable (wigged out) regarding Trump.

    Trump is victim of the intelligence cabal but how many articles has Reason devoted to this? In round figures? 0. That's pretty round.

  • Robes Pierre||

    I wonder if one edited out the alt-right comments, how many would be left? I assume the alt-right comes here to puke all over the comment sections to discredit libertarianism to rational people.

  • John||

    So you are a complete moron who thinks anything that you don't agree with is "alt right". Good to know.

  • Robes Pierre||

    Perfect example! Thank you! But not necessary. There are several hundred comments just as awful as yours on every article.

  • Walk_on_Walter||

    Where's the Reason article on their boyfriend, Jeff Flake, trying to intro a resolution in support of America's fine, upstanding intelligence services who have never, ever lied or gotten anything wrong? Did I miss that? Surely, they're not overlooking their boyfriend's besties, are they?

  • Michael Cook||

    Notwithstanding the absurd attempts by some posters here to minimize them, the Uranium One deals and the Iranian nuclear deals were of great financial importance to Russia.

    That is why Russia and entities controlled by Russia spent so much money and exerted so much effort to persuade/entice the Obama administration to just pitch in and do it.

    There was a cursory FBI examination of some of the Uranium One lobbying done by some of the very same agents who exonerated Hillary before even interviewing her!

    So many Russians accused of malicious meddling or some other ominous but legally vague term were actually out there doing free lance lobbying. They were looking for weakness, for the unusual, for the opportunity.

    To be brutally honest, all good investigative reporting should border on the illegal. Who is ever going to tumble a truly important story without compromising someone's privacy? The drive-by mainstream media know that, but they only employ their doomsday tactics against Republicans.

  • Hattori Hanzo||

    What happened to the press release? Such a sorry state of affairs when Twitter is the prime mode for communication. Here's a series of 217 Tweets of my take on Trump.

  • Mark22||

    @POTUS's performance at the press conference was good.

    I'm sure President Hillary's performance would have been flawless: she would have told the press what the press wanted to hear and told the Democratic base what the Democratic base wanted to hear. All the while, she would have made some backroom deal condemning thousands to die, wasting billions in US tax payer dollars, and making backroom deals with Putin.

    The point is: press conferences and what people say at them is irrelevant.

  • NSK||

    It sounds to me that this "Libertarian-leaning Republican" from Michigan is fighting for his job. I will admit Trump did himself no favors with the presser but presser's are not where policies are made and negotiated. If so we would have a peaceful world because rarely if ever in public do 2 politicians criticize each other on the same stage. That is done behind closed doors. This idea that Trump sounded subservient to Putin and therefore makes you wonder makes no sense. Trump prior to being President was a billionaire. He is going to be a billionaire when he leaves. Other than Putin promising him tons or land or oil to sell, what could Putin give Trump that would force Trump to hand the keys to the US over to Putin. Trump and family are shredded everyday by a never ending liberal press and Democratic party. Why would he put himself through this? No person especially at that age would. That is why the argument fails. Trump has nothing to gain by being Putin's lapdog. Hillary and Bill on the other hand, hmmm.

  • Deplorable Victor||

    And Obama bowed to the King of Saudi Arabia as he apologized for everything American.

    Didn't read it; not interested. If you are anti-Trump you don't beong in America.

  • RoninX||

    Amash is the only consistent libertarian in Congress. He's also one of very few who can reason logically and explain his positions clearly.

    Rand Paul is libertarian-ish, and I donated to his campaign, but his desire to seek favor with Trump is tiresome. (He's still better than the other 99 Senators.)

    I wish Amash would run for President.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    You forgot Thomas Massie of Kentucky.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    You forgot Thomas Massie of Kentucky.

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