President Donald Trump’s stated willingness to accept information on an election rival from foreign governments drew a strong reaction from Democratic presidential candidates, with some saying he was threatening national security and others calling for his impeachment.
“After seeking and receiving the help of our adversaries to get elected in 2016, Donald Trump is now essentially calling for an open season on our 2020 elections,” former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro wrote on Twitter. “Once again, he’s putting his interests above our nation’s, and risking the integrity of our elections.”
Trump, in an interview with ABC News on Wednesday, was asked whether his son Donald Trump Jr. should have contacted the FBI after receiving an email promising information on Trump’s 2016 rival, Hillary Clinton.
“This is somebody that said, ‘We have information on your opponent.’ Oh, let me call the FBI. Give me a break. Life doesn’t work that way,” Trump said.
When interviewer George Stephanopoulos noted that FBI Director Christopher Wray said candidates or politicians in such a situation should call his agency, Trump responded: “The FBI director is wrong.”
“I think I’d want to hear it,” Trump said, adding, “There’s nothing wrong with listening.”
He continued by claiming members of Congress accept that sort of information all the time.
The response from other Democratic presidential candidates was also swift. Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio wrote: “This is sad and cynical. To think every politician would accept research from a sworn enemy shows how demented and amoral this President is.”