Rubio Ridicules Trump’s Proposed ‘Cyber Security Unit’ With Putin

Marco Rubio

Marco Rubio / AP


Sen. Marco Rubio (R., Fla.) rebuked President Donald Trump's notion of working on a "cyber security unit" with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday, saying it was akin to working with Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad on a "chemical weapons unit."

Trump sent out a series of tweets Sunday morning about his Friday meeting with Putin, which included denials by the latter of Russian interference in the U.S. election. The American intelligence community has concluded the Kremlin was behind the extensive cyber campaign to meddle in the race, but Trump has stated other countries may have been involved as well.

Trump said Putin denied the allegation, and he added that the two discussed "forming an impenetrable Cyber Security unit so that election hacking, & many other negative things, will be guarded and safe."

That did not appear to sit well with Rubio, who tweeted shortly after that while "reality and pragmatism requires that we engage Vladimir Putin, he will never be a trusted ally or a reliable constructive partner."

He added that "partnering with Putin" on such a unit was akin to working with Assad on a "chemical weapons unit," a reference to Assad's chemical attacks in Syria that have slaughtered his own people.

"We have no quarrel with Russia or the Russian people. Problem is with Putin & his oppression, war crimes & interference in our elections," Rubio wrote.

Rubio and Trump were fierce rivals during the 2016 race for the Republican primary. Rubio has worked with the president on issues like Cuba but has distanced himself from the White House in other areas. He was one of three senators to warn Trump against returning diplomatic compounds to the Russians that were seized by the Obama administration late last year in response to their election meddling.

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