Meet Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, one of a handful of men in the running to be president-elect Donald Trump’s Secretary of State. Rohrabacher is the U.S. Representative for California's 48th congressional district and chairs the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia and Emerging Threats. He’s also a shameless Putin-apologist.
In a heated exchange with Yahoo News anchor Bianna Golodryga, Rohrabacher claimed Wednesday that allegations of Russia’s human rights abuses were “baloney.”
When confronted by Golodryga, the California Republican summoned the demon of identity politics by attempting to weaponize his interviewer’s ethnic background against her.
“When you talk about human rights abusers in China much can be said about Russia as well in that regard,” Golodryga stated, calmly highlighting a self-evident fact.
That assertion set Rohrabacher off, triggering an ad hominem assault.
“Oh, baloney — where do you come from? How can you say that,” scolded the lawmaker.
Taken aback, Golodryga replied that she had immigrated to the United States as a political refugee from the former Soviet Republic of Moldova.
“Then the audience knows you’re biased,” Rohrabacher sneered, laying bare his contempt for his interviewer’s line of questioning.
Here’s the incredible back-and-forth. Bear in mind this man is currently being considered for US Secretary of State position, America’s chief diplomat.
Rohrabacher spent most of the interview demonizing China, while suggesting that the United States should extend a hand of friendship to the Russian Federation.
"If it's right for us to join in and cooperate and have a better relationship with Russia in order to defeat radical Islam and to pull China back a bit, well, that's a good thing, and that's what this is all about," he stated. "Russia is no longer the Soviet Union. There's a bunch of people here who want to treat it like it's still the Soviet Union and get in the Cold War. That's not what Donald Trump wants — it's not good for America."
Calling for another Russian reset, the congressman failed to mention the following:
- Russia’s brutal scorched earth campaign in Syria in support of the genocidal Bashar al-Assad regime.
- Russia’s ballistic missile sales to the Iran.
- The Russian army’s colonization of Crimea
- Kremlin-sponsored hackers interfering with US election and attacking sensitive cyber infrastructure.
- The FSB’s revenge campaign against political opposition leaders and dissisdents.
- Vladimir Putin’s violent purge of journalists, artists, musicians, singers, homosexuals, and Chechens.
Rohrabacher, again, trying to become Secretary of State, says it's "baloney" that Russia can be considered a human rights abuser: https://t.co/0MxQE13sH3— Sopan Deb (@SopanDeb) December 8, 2016
Thread on Dana Rohrabacher, admirer not only of Putin but of brutal dictators in Uzbekistan and other post-Soviet states https://t.co/9wf1Qvhn6g— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) December 4, 2016
The interview crescendoed to absurdity when Rohrabacher compared dictator Vladimir Putin with former Soviet leader and political reformer Mikhail Gorbachev. On its face, the comparison was absurd. Gorbachev oversaw the collapse of the Soviet Union. He was instrumental in helping his country to transition out of a dictatorial communist system and join the modern world.
Putin is no Gorbachev. The former KGB operative has done more to resurrect the Soviet empire than nearly every other post-Cold War Russian leader combined. Assuming an aggressive governing style, Putin’s excursions into the Middle East and Eastern Europe are designed to keep an increasingly frustrated and impoverished Russian population docile. As Russia’s economy sinks and inflation stings everyday Muscovites, the Kremlin, under the iron fist of Putin, has done everything in its power to turn attention away from domestic politics. Putin’s strategy has been time-tested by every dictator the world over. By feeding his people the opiates of chauvinism and nationalism, he hopes to retain an aura of invincibility as a Tsarist strongman figure. Things are bad at home, so Putin is looking west, redirecting his people’s focus on the prospect of Russian empire building abroad.
Taken as a whole, Putin is hardly a friend to America. But that didn’t stop Rohrabacher from suggesting that former President Ronald Reagan, the conservative hero who presided over the fall of Soviet communism, would approve of rapprochement with Putin.
No, Congressman Rohrabacher.
Reagan is rolling over in his grave right now, dreaming of Star Wars.