House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called President Trump’s invitation to Russian President Vladimir Putin to meet at the White House “beyond belief” in a statement Friday. She called on House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) to clarify that Putin will not address Congress.
“The notion that President Trump would invite a tyrant to Washington is beyond belief,” she said. “Putin’s ongoing attacks on our elections and on Western democracies and his illegal actions in Crimea and the rest of Ukraine deserve the fierce, unanimous condemnation of the international community, not a VIP ticket to our nation’s capital.”
“President Trump’s frightened fawning over Putin is an embarrassment, and a grave threat to our democracy,” she continued. “An invitation to address a Joint Meeting of Congress should be bipartisan and Speaker Ryan must immediately make clear that there is not – and never will be – an invitation for a thug like Putin to address the United States Congress.”
Speaker Ryan has not responded to Pelosi’s remarks but it is unlikely that he would invite Putin to address Congress.
Following President Trump’s remarks Monday in which he appeared to downplay Russian interference in the 2016 election, Ryan issued a statement saying “the president must appreciate that Russia is not our ally.”
"There is no question that Russia interfered in our election and continues attempts to undermine democracy here and around the world,” he said. “That is not just the finding of the American intelligence community but also the House Committee on Intelligence.”