Schiff mocks Trump: Obama, Bush didn't need staff warning 'do not congratulate' Putin

Schiff mocks Trump: Obama, Bush didn't need staff warning 'do not congratulate' Putin
© Getty Images

Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffWhite House, GOP defend Trump emergency declaration Schiff: Evidence of collusion between Trump campaign, Russia 'pretty compelling' Schiff: 'Hard to imagine a poorer case' than Trump's on emergency declaration MORE (D-Calif.) mocked President TrumpDonald John TrumpRosenstein expected to leave DOJ next month: reports Allies wary of Shanahan's assurances with looming presence of Trump States file lawsuit seeking to block Trump's national emergency declaration MORE for reportedly ignoring his staff’s warning not to congratulate Russian President Vladimir Putin for his recent electoral victory.

After Trump tweeted a defense of his congratulatory phone call with Putin that included digs at his White House predecessors, Schiff tweeted that the previous three presidents did not need their staff to tell them to not congratulate Putin.

Former President Obama did congratulate Putin for his 2012 victory in a phone call.

Trump congratulated Putin on Tuesday even though, The Washington Post reported, his national security team had a section in his briefing materials that read “DO NOT CONGRATULATE” in capital letters.

ADVERTISEMENT

The president also failed to follow his aides’ instructions to condemn Putin for the recent poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter in the U.K.

A number of politicians, including Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainGOP senator says Republicans didn't control Senate when they held majority Pence met with silence after mentioning Trump in Munich speech Mark Kelly's campaign raises over M in days after launching Senate bid MORE (R-Ariz.) criticized the president for his remarks.

“An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections," McCain said.

Trump defended his congratulatory call by pointing out that Obama had done the same and arguing that “getting along with Russia (and others) is a good thing, not a bad thing.”

Putin won his fourth term as president on Saturday with nearly 77 percent of the vote.

One of Putin’s biggest critics, Alexei Navalny, was barred from running due to a criminal conviction that many believe to have been politically motivated, and international election-watchers said the contest was tainted by ballot-stuffing and other irregularities.