Congressman Adam Schiff of California has joined many others in the belief that Russia has dirt on the POTUS. The ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee told ABC News that “Trump is acting like someone who is compromised.”
“It may very well be that he is compromised or it may very well be that he believes he’s compromised, that the Russians have information on him,” Shiff added.
The Congressman is not the first to voice concern about the POTUS and blackmail. The National Review revealed on Monday that Nancy Pelosi believes the Helsinki press conference proves blackmail is involved in Trump’s dealings with Vladimir Putin.
The idea that the Russians have secret information on Trump stems from the existence of the infamous Steele Dossier. The Dossier is filled with many salacious accusations. However, many of the dossier’s claims are currently unsubstantiated. Yet, the Dossier is far from being the only reason Trump is suspected of being blackmailed by Russia.
The theory has gained a lot of traction in the wake of the POTUS’ joint press conference with Russian President Putin in Helsinki. During the press conference, Trump failed to go after Putin about Russia meddling in the 2016 U.S. election. The POTUS, at first, sided with Putin over his own US Intelligence community but walked back his words one day later, claiming he “misspoke” and had no reason to believe Russia wasn’t involved.
The press conference was met with bipartisan rebukes from members of Congress. The critics include Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan who said, “ There is no question that Russia interfered in our election and continues attempts to undermine democracy here and around the world.”
Another outspoken Republican critic of Trump has been Senator John McCain of Arizona. McCain who is battling brain cancer reacted to Trump’s Helsinki performance saying it was, “One of the most disgraceful performances by an American President in memory.”
Although Trump has tried to walk back his comments at the Helsinki press conference many lawmakers have a hard time believing the President is sincere. Lawmakers were in disbelief by the fact that the POTUS has now invited Vladimir Putin to the United States for a second meeting.
Perhaps after the heat Trump took following the Helsinki summit, he will finally push Putin on election meddling. If the POTUS fails to send a strongly worded message to Putin and company, it will only increase the belief that Russian is blackmailing him.