McCain: Russia could undermine democracy unless US acts

Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainCindy McCain says no one in Republican Party carries 'voice of reason' after husband's death Anti-gun violence organization endorses Kelly's Senate bid McCain's family, McCain Institute to promote #ActsOfCivility in marking first anniversary of senator's death MORE (R-Ariz.) says Russia has the potential to undermine democracy unless U.S. officials respond to the country's meddling in the presidential election.

"On the issue of the Russians, there is no doubt about it and we have to act and we have to have a policy — which this administration does not have — and address this threat to our national security," McCain said in a CNN interview that aired Tuesday.

"If they're able to undermine an election, they're able then to undermine democracy."


McCain said he expects President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Hill's Campaign Report: Democratic field begins to shrink ahead of critical stretch To ward off recession, Trump should keep his mouth and smartphone shut Trump: 'Who is our bigger enemy,' Fed chief or Chinese leader? MORE to change his view regarding the Russian interference when presented with "overwhelming evidence."

A secret CIA assessment concluded Russia intervened in the presidential race to help Trump, but the president-elect has dismissed that assessment, calling it "ridiculous" and vowing warmer relations with Russia.

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamWhite House won't move forward with billions in foreign aid cuts GOP group calls on Republican senators to stand up to McConnell on election security in new ads Cindy McCain says no one in Republican Party carries 'voice of reason' after husband's death MORE (R-S.C.) argued during the joint CNN interview Tuesday that Democrats and Republicans are united in their opposition to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"I think most of us, Democrats and Republicans, really believe that Russia is up to no good all over the world. They're trying to break the back of democracies," he said.

"And if we don't push back against Putin, Iran and China, they can hack into our systems."

Graham said the U.S. needs to show other nations what will happen to them if they try to interfere in the country's democratic process. 

"To my Republican colleagues: It's the Democrats today, it could be us tomorrow."