House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy Tuesday accused Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of “playing politics with American lives” over reports that Russian operatives paid a bounty to Taliban fighters to kill U.S. soldiers. Schumer asked if it would be worse if President Donald Trump did not know about the situation or if he knew but did nothing.
“We all know that Russia is dangerous to America,” McCarthy, R-Calif., said on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends,” adding that the Trump administration has moved away from ex-President Barack Obama’s policy on resetting relations.
“What the president did was give weapons to Ukraine,” said McCarthy. “What President Trump did was also put sanctions on Russia. President Trump is doing everything he did to protect our American troops, but the idea of leaking information, not even knowing whether it’s true or not, in the process, and playing it out in politics is dangerous to all Americans who serve in our military anywhere in the world.”
Schumer, he added, is “part of the gang, as I am myself, and this is not the way we should handle the situation or classified information and play it out into politics.”
Schumer said Monday on Twitter that he is calling for an “an immediate briefing from the Directors of National Intelligence and the CIA for all 100 Senators … we also need to know whether or not President Trump was told this information, and if so, when.”
McCarthy also slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for extending the chamber’s proxy vote and for telling lawmakers they can work from home if they don’t feel comfortable coming to Washington.
“It is shadow voting and giving all your votes to Nancy Pelosi, so if you voted for your member of Congress, she or he, they no longer have the power. They turned it over to Nancy Pelosi. They stay home,” said McCarthy. “They’re getting paid for not working. Congress is essential. We work through yellow fever, through the burning of the Capitol.”
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