GOP lawmaker: Putin, like Hitler, is a land grabber

Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas) on Wednesday said Russian President Vladimir Putin is similar to Adolf Hitler, as both seem to have the same interest in taking over sovereign countries.

On the House floor, Poe said Putin's military forays into Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine this week are similar to Germany's successful annexation of Austria and part of Czechoslovakia in the late 1930s.

"And so yes, Putin is similar to Adolf Hitler in that he has this appetite for other people's land, and he tries to justify it some way, and he just waits to see if anybody is going to do anything about it," Poe said.

"I think the analogy is in order, and I think the world should understand that Putin has it somewhere in his brain that he can just, on his own, justify the taking other people's sovereign land."

Poe's comments were made on the same day that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton walked back her comment this week that Putin's military intervention in Ukraine is similar to Nazi Germany's effort to take over countries.

In comments Wednesday, Clinton said Putin's claim to want to protect Russians in Ukraine is "reminiscent of the claims that were made back in the 1930s, when Germany under the Nazis keeps talking about how they had to protect German in Poland and Czechosolvakia," she said.

Earlier in the day, Poe introduced legislation calling on the federal government to expedite natural gas sales to Ukraine, which Republicans say would help Ukraine but also make that country less dependent on energy supplies from Russia.

On Thursday, the House will vote on a bill aimed at making it easier for Ukraine to finance energy purchases.

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