Paul, Coons, Flake

Executive Session (Bounds Nomination)

Senator Paul: (11:23 a.m.)

  • Spoke on the recent meeting between President Trump and President Putin.
    • "But simply bringing the hatred of the president to the Senate floor in order to say, we're done with diplomats. We're going to add more sanctions and more sanctions. You know what? I would rather that we still have open channels of discussion with the Russians. Kennedy, at the height of the Cold War, had a direct line to Khrushchev, and it may have prevented the end of the World. Should we be so crazy about partisanship that we now say, we don't want to talk to the Russians. We're not going to have relations with the Russians. We should stand firm and say, stay the hell out of our elections, but we should not stick our head in the ground and say we're not going to talk to them."

 

Senator Coons: (11:46 a.m.)

  • Spoke on the recent meeting between President Trump and President Putin.
    • "I come to the floor today with my colleague, Senator Flake of Arizona, to send a strong and clear and importantly a bipartisan message to the American people, which is that we stand with the men and women of the Department of Justice, the men and women of the U.S. intelligence community. We sport the ongoing investigation into Russian interference in our elections and we must act, and act unequivocally to hold Russia accountable for its actions. Mr. President, just three days after the U.S. intelligence community issued a detailed and staggering find that led to an indictment against 12 Russian military intelligence officers for interfering in our 2016 election, President Trump stood shoulder to shoulder with President Putin and failed to challenge Putin's claim that his government played no role in the effort to undermine our democracy."

 

Senator Flake: (11:50 a.m.)

  • Spoke on the recent meeting between President Trump and President Putin.
    • "The Senate needs to speak here. Mr. President, in his dystopian novel "1984" George Orwell wrote a party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their most essential, most final essential command. Unquote. Well, we saw earlier this week in Helsinki what was truly an Orwellian moment. What we saw earlier this week in Helsinki is what happens when you wage war on objective reality for nearly two solid years, calling real things fake and fake things real. As if conditioning others to embrace the same confusion. Ultimately you're rendered unable to tell the difference between the two and are at critical times seemingly rendered incapable of thinking clearly."