Russian President Vladimir Putin’s op-ed in The New York Times has accomplished something that’s hard to do these days: Bring Congress together.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., was succinct in a Thursday morning post on Twitter, calling the Putin column an “insult” to Americans. Across the political aisle, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez said he practically tossed his dinner.
“I almost wanted to vomit,” Menendez, D-N.J., told CNN. “I worry when someone who came up through the KGB tells us what is in our national interests, and what is not. It really raises the question of how serious the Russian proposal is.”
Putin says in the column that he believes a U.S. airstrike on Syria could possibly “increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism.” At the end, he took issue with President Obama’s remarks about American exceptionalism.
“It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation,” Putin wrote.
McCain has said he is “extremely skeptical” about the Russian proposal for Syrian President Bashar Assad to hand over chemical weapons, but is willing to let the process play out.