Rep. Maxine Waters says she believes Russian President Vladimir Putin made a “secret deal” with Donald Trump to get him elected in exchange for Trump lifting U.S. sanctions on Russia.
Water’s made the baseless claim on Monday’s broadcast of CNN’s “OutFront,” admitting that she had zero facts to back up what she was saying.
Host Erin Burnett said, “Republicans, to this point, they say that your party has been looking to impeach President Trump when he was elected because you don’t like him. You have looked for item after item, and finally, you have found one. You did say less than two weeks into his presidency, that you wanted to see him impeached, congresswoman, for other reasons than we are obviously sitting here now talking about. What do you say to your Republican critics, when they say, ‘well look, they have been saying this since the beginning, so, you know, they’re just looking for excuses.’?”
Waters responded, “Well, they say these things because they cannot refute the facts. As a matter of fact, when I observed this president and the way that he conducted himself during the primary elections, the way he called names, the way he lied, the way he talked about grabbing women by their private parts— I never thought we would hear president talk like that. And also, I had done some research. I knew about his alignment with Putin. I knew about Manafort and what the relationship was. And the fact that he had been sent there by Putin, in essence, to head up the president’s campaign. Because I believe, even though I don’t have the facts to prove it, I believe that Putin wanted to lift the sanctions. He’s always wanted to lift these sanctions that were placed on him because of his interfering and incursion into Crimea. So I believe that they wanted to elect President Trump. And Trump, I believe, agreed. I will always believe this, that he agreed that if he got elected, he would lift those sanctions. He would like to do it. He’s not been able to do it.”
She continued, “When they talk about we’re just making things up, and he talks about this as a witch hunt, there are too many facts. This president will not condemn Putin for hacking into the Democratic National Committee. Will not condemn him for hacking into our election system. These are facts. Seventeen of our intelligence agencies have said this. Are these patriots or not? What do they think about our democracy being undermined by the president of the United States of America? If they want to say we just don’t like him, they don’t really care about what happened to this democracy, don’t have an appreciation for the Constitution.”
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