Foreign policy expert Richard Haass explained the risks President Donald Trump faced in his planned one-on-one meeting with Russian president Vladimir Putin.
The president has agreed to meet alone with Putin, with no other U.S. officials present, which panelists on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” agreed was incredibly unusual and dangerous.
“It’s almost as if he has something to hide,” said host Joe Scarborough.
Haas, the longtime president of the Council on Foreign Relations, said the meeting was fraught with peril.
“It’s beyond unusual,” Haass said. “You often have small meetings. I worked for presidents, usually the president and his opposite number and one staffer, most often the national security adviser — that would be the small meeting. Then you have the larger meeting and each side would have six or ten people.”
Trump also met alone with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un last month in Singapore, but a follow-up meeting this weekend with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo went poorly — in part because the president failed to reach a conclusive agreement on nuclear disarmament.
“Last time it was done was Singapore,” Haass said. “We’ll be dealing for a long time with the fallout of that.”
He said the stakes in a Trump-Putin meeting were too high to come out with dueling narratives, which happened after his meeting with Kim.
“This meeting, of all meetings, given the stakes, given the political backdrop, given the stakes, you really need a careful record for followup,” Haass said. “You need to document what Putin said, you want to document what the president said.”
“The consequences here of the United States and Russia,” he added, “whether it’s over Ukraine, Syria, we could talk about the specific issues of the two having the same kind of reaction of the United States and North Korea, where you essentially have two different readouts of the meeting, is really dangerous.”
Trump ‘facing a rapid decline’ as he wallows in ‘rage and denial’ over election loss: report
President Donald Trump's mental health since losing the 2020 presidential election was the focus of a new analysis by New York Times chief White House correspondent Peter Baker that was published online Saturday.
"Over the past week, President Trump posted or reposted more than 130 messages on Twitter lashing out at the results of an election he lost. He mentioned the coronavirus pandemic now reaching its darkest hours four times — and even then just to assert that he was right about the outbreak and the experts were wrong," Baker reported under the headline, "Trump’s Final Days of Rage and Denial."
Will we ever know how much money Trump and his family squeezed out of his presidency?
Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.
Four years ago, a victorious Donald Trump insisted that he had only lost the popular vote due to widespread fraud while raising tens of millions of dollars for his inauguration. Now, as his baseless, often goofy lawsuits get laughed out of courtroom after courtroom, a defeated Trump and his allies are raising tens of millions of dollars from his easily-enraged MAGA base to "stop the steal." And the lion's share of the $207 million Trump has raised since the election hasn't been spent on his legal campaign, but will instead fund his new political slush fund, among other things.
Trump’s ‘stupid’ call to Kemp ‘bordered on criminality’: Ex-Senate leader Harry Reid
On CNN Saturday, former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) tore into President Donald Trump for his phone call demanding the governor of Georgia convene the legislature to overturn the election.
"Trump is out of touch with reality," said Reid. "The Republican secretary of state in Georgia has been very strong. Georgia is a state that is not going to allow this foolishness to continue. They had an election. They've proved it. They certified it. And I think that Trump is wasting his time. Georgia is not going to have its reputation ruined by some stupid damn thing that Trump is trying to do that is outside the realm of reality."