Key Republican: Putin meeting will be most ‘important’ and ‘dangerous’ of Biden trip

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas)
Greg Nash

The top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee predicted President Biden’s trip to Geneva and meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin will be the most “important” and “dangerous” of his young presidency. 

“I think it’s important we work with our NATO allies. We work with the G-7,” Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) said during an appearance on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday. “I think [former President] Trump — you know, the frustration was there’s a lot of talk and no action. And so, that’s why he espoused ‘America first.’ We want to espouse our ideals over our European partners.” 

In reference to Biden’s upcoming meeting with Putin, McCaul said: “Now, I think it’s better that we work together. I do think it’s smart to meet with our NATO allies and G-7 prior to the Putin summit, which is going to be the most powerful and most dangerous meeting on this trip.” 

During a press conference on Sunday morning, Biden said he intends to send a message to world leaders that “America is back” and outlined his reasoning for deciding against holding a joint press conference with Putin, as Trump did. 

“I always found, and I don’t mean to suggest the press should not know, but this is not a contest about who can do better in front of a press conference or try to embarrass each other,” Biden said. “It’s about making myself very clear what the conditions are to get a better relationship are with Russia.” 

Some Republicans have suggested Biden should not meet with Putin in the wake of recent cyber and ransomware attacks conducted by Russia-based criminals. 

“I think the price for admission, to a ticket for this seat, was way too high,” McCaul said on ABC. “The president waved in the natural interest Nord Stream II, which will be Putin’s pipeline going into Europe so that Europe … our partners will be dependent on Russian energy,” McCaul said. “I don’t think that’s in the United States’ national interest. And, quite frankly, it’s not in Europe’s best interest either. And this really empowered Putin when this happened. And I think we’re giving him a lot of stuff.”

Biden’s meeting with Putin is slated for Wednesday in Geneva. 

Tags Donald Trump Donald Trump Joe Biden Joe Biden Michael McCaul Vladimir Putin Vladimir Putin

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