Dem on Putin coming to US: 'You don't invite the burglar to dinner'

Dem on Putin coming to US: 'You don't invite the burglar to dinner'
© Greg Nash

Rep. Eric SwalwellEric Michael SwalwellVoters must strongly reject the president's abuses by voting him out this November Democrats face tough questions with Bolton Twitter, Facebook see new tactics in foreign disinformation efforts MORE (D-Calif.) on Thursday warned against inviting Russian President Vladimir Putin to the White House, saying it would be akin to inviting a home burglar over for dinner.

"Russia attacked our democracy this past election. When your home is burglarized, you don’t invite the burglar over to dinner. You put in a home security system," Swalwell said on CNN's "The Situation Room."

"We should not be inviting President Putin to dinner at the White House – have a visit at the White House – especially during the season of our midterm elections," he added. 

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White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said earlier Thursday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse panel approves 0.5B defense policy bill House panel votes against curtailing Insurrection Act powers after heated debate House panel votes to constrain Afghan drawdown, ask for assessment on 'incentives' to attack US troops MORE had instructed his national security adviser, John Bolton, to invite Putin to Washington in the fall.

The announcement came days after Trump held a controversial joint news conference with Putin in Helsinki, during which he appeared to side with Putin's denials over the U.S. intelligence community's assessment that Moscow meddled in the 2016 presidential election.

Trump's comments on Monday were a remarkable break from his own administration, which indicted 12 Russian officials just days earlier on charges that they hacked Democratic servers during the 2016 race.

The U.S. president on Tuesday sought to walk back his comments after attracting intense criticism from both Democrats and Republicans, insisting that he misspoke when he said that he did not know why Russia would interfere in U.S. political affairs.

Then the White House on Wednesday sought to clarify Trump's remarks after he caused renewed backlash when he answered in the negative when asked if Russia's election meddling efforts continue to pose a threat, something that senior intelligence officials in his administration have warned.

Despite the criticism this week, Trump has hailed his Helsinki summit with Putin as a "great success" and said that he wanted to meet with his Russian counterpart again.