Last week, Donald Trump went to a summit with Russian president Vladimir Putin, a former KGB agent who is notorious for having political enemies and journalists who oppose and criticize him killed. At the summit, Trump said he believes Putin's denial of Russia's hacking of the 2016 U.S. elections over the intelligence community's unanimous conclusion that Russia indeed interfered.
Mr. Trump struggles with facts in all areas not just pertaining to Russian meddling. But this is a new low even for him. The FBI, CIA, NSA and the intelligence agencies do extremely risky work to keep us safe, and they risk their lives every day so we don't have to. But he stood on that stage in Helsinki, Finland, and stood next to Putin like he's a friend, and defended the Russian dictator for undermining our free and fair elections. Trump said that he has "no reason to believe why it would be Russia" who meddled in our elections.
24 hours after his joint press conference, which received jeers from both Republicans and Democrats, the Russian-backed American president said that he misspoke and he meant to say he has no reason to believe why it "wouldn't" be Russia. Then he ranted about Robert Mueller's "witch hunt," and how it's hurting our country's relationship with Russia. Trump has claimed in the past that our current relations with Russia are the worst they have ever been, disregarding the Cuban Missile Crisis in the 1960s.
It's been evident for over a year now if not more: Donald Trump speaks highly and never negatively over Vladimir Putin because the Russian government has some sort of leverage over our American president. And Trump has been an American mouthpiece for Putin by undermining NATO, the European Union, and democratically-led countries in Europe.
So now more than ever we must ask the all-important question: what is this leverage? Is it massive debt? Is it the infamous "pee pee tape?" Nonetheless, it's hard to dispute that we have an extreme national security case going on right now in that the man in the Oval Office is compromised by a hostile foreign power, and the Republican-controlled Congress has no intention of even remotely holding Mr. Trump accountable.
Why is the Republican Party so quiet and unwilling to speak out? Senators Jeff Flake and John McCain write strong letters expressing their disappointment, but they just speak words and provide no tangible, substantive opposition to the president. It may have to do with some Republicans have a love for Russia similar to Trump himself, and reports have come out recently that the NRA has been linked to Russian money. And what do we know about most Republicans? They love the NRA more than they love their own children, and that's hardly a hyperbole.
Since Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan won't do anything about Trump, it's long been time we elect people who will. This Nov. 6 will be the most important midterm election of our lifetime, and one cannot emphasize enough how important this election is. Voting rights, abortion rights and the sheer fundamentals of the Constitution and our democracy that Trump isn't willing to uphold are at stake.