Hillary Clinton: 'Deeply troubling' for White House to consider Putin request to interview Americans
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Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHillary Clinton to start new podcast Centrist Democrats insist Sanders would need delegate majority to win President Trump is weak against Bernie Sanders in foreign affairs MORE on Thursday condemned the Trump administration for considering Russian President Vladimir Putin's offer to allow U.S. law enforcement to observe questioning of indicted Russians in exchange for allowing Russian authorities to question American citizens.

"Ambassador @McFaul is a patriot who has spent his career standing up for America," Clinton tweeted. "To see the White House even hesitate to defend a diplomat is deeply troubling." 

Clinton joined a growing chorus of Democrats, Republicans and former diplomats who have expressed concerns with the White House's decision to discuss Putin's offer.


Clinton, who lost to President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Memo: Biden seeks revival in South Carolina Congress eyes billion to billion to combat coronavirus Sanders makes the case against Biden ahead of SC primary MORE in 2016, served as secretary of State from 2009 to 2013, a tenure that briefly overlapped with former U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul's time in that role.

McFaul has long been a target of the Kremlin due to his comments critical of Putin and Russian policies.

At a joint press conference on Monday, Putin said he’d be willing to allow U.S. law enforcement to travel to Russia and observe the questioning of suspects implicated in special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerCNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting The Hill's 12:30 Report: New Hampshire fallout MORE’s election interference probe. In exchange, Putin said he’d want access to U.S. citizens for questioning, including McFaul and financier Bill Browder.

Putin alleged without evidence that Browder illegally transferred $1.5 billion out of Russia and had funneled $400 million toward Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. The Russian prosecutor’s office later corrected that figure to $400,000.

Browder has denied the allegations.

Trump called Putin's suggestion an "interesting idea" and an "incredible offer" during Monday's press conference.

The White House has continued to show openness to the idea, with press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders saying Wednesday that Trump would discuss the offer with other U.S. officials.

McFaul has been outspoken over the last 24 hours in calling for Trump to outright reject Putin's suggestion.

"The president of the United States needs to come out and categorically denounce it," McFaul said Thursday on MSNBC. "Maybe he didn’t understand it. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt."