GOP lawmaker calls on Trump to declare Russia 'the enemy of America' ahead of Putin summit

GOP lawmaker calls on Trump to declare Russia 'the enemy of America' ahead of Putin summit
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GOP Sen. Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric SasseMcConnell tamps down any talk of Kavanaugh withdrawal Senate approves 4B spending bill Grassley agrees to second Kavanaugh hearing after GOP members revolt MORE (Neb.) called on President TrumpDonald John TrumpLondon terror suspect’s children told authorities he complained about Trump: inquiry The Memo: Tide turns on Kavanaugh Trump to nominate retiring lawmaker as head of trade agency MORE to declare that Russia is an enemy of the U.S. as the commander in chief met with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Sasse made the remark in response to a Trump tweet ahead of the meeting in which he blamed the poor U.S. relationship with Russia on past U.S. administrations and the investigation into possible interference in the 2016 presidential election.

“Our relationship with Russia has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!” Trump tweeted.

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“A better thing, Mr. President, would be to declare: ‘Russia is the enemy of America and our allies, and we will expose and respond to their continued cyber-attacks against our nation,’ ” Sasse responded.

On Sunday, he said that he does not think Trump should be “dignifying” the Russian leader with a meeting.

"President Trump should have only one message for Putin tomorrow: Quit messing with America," Sasse tweeted. He also called Putin a “murderer” for his history as a member of the KGB, and a “crook and a liar.”

The Trump-Putin meeting in Helsinki comes days after special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE’s indictment of 12 Russian intelligence officials. Mueller charged the officials with conspiring to hack into U.S. systems and influence the presidential election.

Trump told reporters that he would bring up election meddling in his one-on-one meeting with Putin.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misattributed a quotation to Sasse. It has been corrected.