On Tuesday, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan made clear he does not support the notion that Trump committed treason at his Helsinki press conference with Vladimir Putin.
Trump definitely dropped the ball (as he also did, in my view, politically, here)…
…yet, despite absurd claims among congressional Democrats, the media, countless memes, and the ignorant all over social media, there’s quite a difference between beefing it on the world stage (like this?) and committing treason.
Ryan explained his thoughts to reporters:
“Vladimir Putin does not share our interests; Vladimir Putin does not share our values. … [Russia] did interfere in our elections. Let me be really clear. There should be no doubt about that. It’s also clear that it did not have a material effect on our elections.”
That should have been Trump’s message as well. Though not necessarily from the podium in Finland.
As indicated previously, I believe John Cornyn was correct (please see more here): Trump’s biggest problem is the conflation of his own alleged Russia collusion with Moscow’s meddling in the election. Therefore, in order to exonerate his own baby self, he has to throw out the bathwater of Putin’s electoral interference.
In making that mistake, Trump is essentially conflating himself with Putin. That’s a mistake, since Trump considers himself a good guy and Putin is, let’s just say, questionable. Ryan thinks so, too:
“I understand a desire to have good relations, that is perfectly reasonable. But Russia is a menacing government that does not share our interests. And it does not share our values, and I think that should be made very very clear.”
Since the news briefing, outrage has been shooting from the TV like lasers at a Pink Floyd show, with people like Obama’s former CIA director, John Brennan, calling “treason.”
How about something more measured? Thanks, Paul Ryan:
“[There is] no moral equivalence between the United States and Russia.”
Do you agree with Ryan’s handling of the Helsinki debacle? Should he be harder on Trump? Please let us all know in the Comments section below.
For more coverage of Paul Ryan, check out his NATO response here.
For something totally different, here are my pieces on the Trump administration’s request for an extension on family reunification, Michelle Wolf’s vulgar attack on Melania Trump, and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s lesson for the Left.
Find all my RedState work here.