- McCain on Tuesday did not mention Trump's name in a statement
- McCain said to pay no heed to any more conciliatory language from Putin
McCain on Tuesday did not mention Trump's name in a statement but left no question about his opinion on a president acting too chummy with the Russian leader. Trump has been criticized by Republicans at times for his praise of Putin and believes that the US and Russia can work strategically together to advance an international agenda.
McCain said President Barack Obama's attempts to cool tensions between the US and Russia had enabled the nation to exert more power in Syria and provide key support to embattled Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad.
"At the very least, the price of another 'reset' would be complicity in Putin and Assad's butchery of the Syrian people. That is an unacceptable price for a great nation," McCain said. "When America has been at its greatest, it is when we have stood on the side those fighting tyranny. That is where we must stand again."
McCain said to pay no heed to any more conciliatory language from Putin, who he blasted as a "former KGB agent who has plunged his country into tyranny, murdered his political opponents, invaded his neighbors, threatened America's allies, and attempted to undermine America's elections."
Trump and Putin spoke recently by phone, and the incoming US president also spoke Tuesday with Ukrainian leader Petro Poroshenko, a Putin foe.