McCain, Schumer on Snowden: Russia should pay a price
June 30th, 2013
03:57 PM ET
1 year ago

McCain, Schumer on Snowden: Russia should pay a price

(CNN) - Two high-profile senators on Sunday continued to admonish Russia for not handing over Edward Snowden, the leaker of National Security Agency secrets who's hiding in Russia as he seeks asylum in Ecuador.

Republican Sen. John McCain said Snowden's actions amounted to a "slap in the face to the United States" and called President Vladimir Putin "an old colonel KGB apparatchik" who "dreams of the restoration of the Russian Empire."

"I think we pushed the reset back down to about 1955. And so we have to deal realistically with an autocratic ruler of Russia who continues to repress people," McCain said on "Fox News Sunday."

Europe furious, 'shocked' by report of U.S. spying

"They thumb our nose at us no matter what the issue is, and we should deal realistically, not a return of the Cold War, but realistically with Vladimir Putin," he also said.

After news that Snowden left Hong Kong for Russia last week, President Barack Obama said Thursday he's "not going to be scrambling jets to get a 29-year-old hacker."

A top Russian lawmaker said Sunday that Russia must not hand Snowden over to the United States.

"It's not a matter of Snowden's usefulness to Russia, it's a matter of principle," Alexei Pushkov - who heads the international affairs committee at the Duma, the lower house of parliament - said on Twitter. Meanwhile, Putin has said, "The sooner he selects his final destination point, the better both for us and for himself."

Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer said Sunday he's not sure what should be done to get Snowden back, but Russia should "pay a price" for "doing what they did."

"(Putin) ought to know he is going to pay a price here because he goes out of his way to stick his finger in the eye of America whether it is Iran, Syria and now this," he said on the same Fox program. "He has got lots of vulnerabilities."

If Ecuador grants asylum to Snowden, Schumer called for the U.S. to cut its trade and foreign aid to the South American country.

"We ought to be very clear with Ecuador that if they take Snowden, they are going to pay a price," he said.

Vice President Joe Biden asked Ecuador "to please reject" the request for asylum, according to Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa.


Filed under: Charles Schumer • John McCain • NSA • Russia
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Hey

    @rs (The bigger issue is the ongoing leakage of information and data via Wikileaks.) this is the stupidest thing i have ever read how is wikileaks the problem you don't see a problem with the Obama administration constantly thumbing his nose at our constituion this is much bigger then snowden we already knew for years that the nsa was spying on americans why was this such a big deal now ill tell you why becuase this is a false flag while we are being distracted with this snowden story. Syrian rebels have attacked the syrian government with sarin gas yes thats right the rebels have chemical weapons. Do you know who the rebels are? Al qaeda placed by our own U.S Government. Sound crazy of course it does but it's ok you liberals are all alike take the word of the liberal bias media. This is the start of a world war as CHINA and Russia have both warned us not to get involved in syria syria and Iran are allies and china and russia back syria Iran has deployed 4,000 troops to syria in the last week but not one major newsoutlet has covered the story. Ever wonder what happen to OBAMA getting serious on Iran he was alot of talk he gave them another year and Iran has already completed there nuclear program and now are also armed with nuclear weapons all this comes at the news that obama also wants to rid our country of 1/3 of its nuclear arms please wake up already we are being set up for war in the homeland. THink back to the national defense authorazation act of 2012 that obama signed. Think about all the privacy programs all the recent scandals this isnt a conspiracy this is known fact wake up!!!

    June 30, 2013 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  2. S. B. Stein

    Snowden hasn't shown that he tried to change the program from the inside. Where were his attempts to talk to Congress before he showed the world what every country has tried to do? If the US were serious in trying to get him, there would be some quiet price on his head.

    June 30, 2013 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  3. simplefaith

    Snowden is probably regreting what he has done. Ecuador is not allowing him into their country without a Visa. Russians just may want the information on the laptops. Snowden, what are you going to do. You are just a young man with a long life ahead of you. Choices? Spending your life in Federal Prison, spending your life in Russian prison? Or being a fugitive from justice and on the run forever. Right now, there are people in this world that want to be an American citizen and you just gave it up for WHAT? I feel very sorry for you for wanting to rat on your country who has freedom of speech.

    June 30, 2013 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  4. Michael Benjamin

    What price pray tell should Russia pay? Stop the bombastic outbursts when you both know there is really nothing that can be done.

    June 30, 2013 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  5. will never vote Republician again

    Bomb bomb bomb anything McCain!

    June 30, 2013 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  6. RF

    What is it with the republicans? They feel like they can bully other countries around at will. Is it any wonder why so many countries hate Americans!

    June 30, 2013 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  7. HenryMiller

    So much for not retaliating against whistle-blowers.

    The US government is breaking its own laws and violating its own Constitution and these jerks, rather than going after the people who caused that to happen, want to go after the guy who blew the whistle.

    Contemptible!

    June 30, 2013 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  8. bmull

    What's got these guys panties in such a bunch? All I can think is Snowden has got some dirt on Israel.

    June 30, 2013 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  9. Monty Python

    Russia/1955 = North Korea/2013
    Starving communist poor country, but have weapons of mass destruction in abundance.

    July 1, 2013 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  10. HeyAmerica

    Resistance is futile

    July 1, 2013 01:07 am at 1:07 am |
  11. Name Uche Agonsi

    There are too many sides of this Snowden's situation. They need expertise management, not comments from loose cannons like McCain & Schumer. US needs not to go to war or pick up quarrels with every country because of Snowden. Two issues at the front burner now are straightening up the EU worries & getting Snowden......repairing the base. But is this the McCain that gunned for US presidency. The Repubs sure know how to put the world into trouble. I sincerely think that those EU officials echoing undesirable words on this development need to relax a bit on the issue. They dont seem to remember that Europe is US. They cannt do without each other. Actions should be by diplomatic channel or the end up with unwanted VERY BAD RESULTS.

    July 1, 2013 02:11 am at 2:11 am |
  12. Mike

    Ranting about "KGB apparatchik" in the face of the USA's own secret intelligence data collection of it's own citizens and allies?!? Really? Is McCain that obtuse?

    July 1, 2013 03:45 am at 3:45 am |
  13. gwiz

    proud to be from the spy and lie empire

    July 1, 2013 06:00 am at 6:00 am |
  14. Gurgyl

    Let him stay there–they tackle this traitor–then deport.

    July 1, 2013 06:48 am at 6:48 am |
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