First on CNN: Russians turned down, again
September 5th, 2013
05:28 PM ET
11 months ago

First on CNN: Russians turned down, again

Washington (CNN) – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has turned down a Russian request to meet with him to discuss Syria, his office tells CNN, making it unclear if any U.S. lawmakers will sit down with a planned delegation from Moscow.

This comes less than a day after House Speaker John Boehner similarly turned down a request from the Russian government to meet.

A spokesman for the Russian embassy would not comment on the declined requests. “We are still working on the visit,” Maxim Abramov told CNN.

The rebuffed requests come as President Obama is meeting with G-20 leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, in St. Petersburg. Russian leaders have been outspoken in opposition to U.S. military action in Syria and said that they planned to try to lobby against the mission by directly meeting with members of the U.S. Congress.

But so far, no U.S. lawmakers have indicated that they will meet with them when they arrive.


Filed under: Congress • Syria
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. sanity

    Let Putin meet with Rodman. He's a lot smarter than Reid is, anyway.

    September 5, 2013 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  2. McBlaine

    They don't want to talk about real issues here. Healthcare or those fake scandals. These people are stupid to not talk to Russia . Talk never killed anyone but no talk can kill millions.

    September 5, 2013 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  3. curious

    Agree with you Jon. This isn't about a civil war anymore. Chemical weapons are now being used and if no one steps in it gives Syria no reason to stop. Chemical weapons have been basically banned by the world for very good reasons. All those nations signed the treaty for the CWC for those reasons. The red line isn't made by Obama, it is an obligation that should be made by every nation that signed on at the CWC to ensure that the Syrian government doesn't use them again and that all stockpiles are destroyed.

    September 5, 2013 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  4. Web Guru

    How arrogant and closed minded.

    September 5, 2013 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  5. ASPG

    Jon said:

    "2. The Russians are wrong. Syria used Sarin Gas and killed alot of their own civilians.." ...

    How do you know this and why don't you share everything you know with us?

    September 5, 2013 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  6. Jkk

    Hypocrisy abounds. We have no problem watching Africans commit genocide, slaughtering factors of ten more people than have been taken in Syria. What pompous rhetoric, to pick and chose which region or nation will be the benefactor of our gracious intervention. Ship both houses of congress and their master to Syria, and let them figure it out personally.

    September 5, 2013 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  7. Mulugeta

    Syria is an irresponsible government . So, US lawmaker must be help president Barak Obama to take action on it

    September 5, 2013 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    for once in God knows how long the white house and congress has each others backs. It is quite clear that Russia would like to divide and conquer Washington Thank God our leaders saw this transparency. Ok Russia bring it ...we're sticking together

    September 5, 2013 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  9. Geordie

    This President and his administration have no foreign relation skills and hence the world doesn't trust Obama.
    Quite frankly Obama doesn't know what to do , this was his 3 a.m. call and he didn't answer.
    The scary part is , who's side is Obama on .???
    The uprising in Syria was hijacked by terrorists and the Muslim Brotherhood which are also enemies of the west.
    As for Reid shunning the Russian delegation is political posturing and quite disgusting ,as any dialogue at this time that might help the situation in Syria should be met.

    September 5, 2013 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  10. david

    Yea let's ignore the country we need to have on our side with this ignorant strike!

    September 5, 2013 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  11. Daniel

    To compel a man to furnish funds for the propagation of ideas he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.
    -Thomas Jefferson [What would Jefferson say today?]
    Let those men who would take our military might and attack a sovern nation do so with thier own bank accounts and family property, for we the people do not give consent of our hard earned taxes to tear in pieces men and women in the name of saving face!

    September 5, 2013 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  12. dalene44

    Leaders in both status quo parties have refused the Russian request to talk diplomacy. Very ungracious considering they alerted us to the Boston brothers well in advance of that attack. UN had determined that sarin gas was used by rebels in March. This nothing to do with Democracy and everything to do with the administrations's determination to start a war. Another endless and potentially catastrophic war.

    September 5, 2013 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    ok kool

    September 5, 2013 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  14. King

    It seams there is some alternative motives at work? Why are we rushing to the possibility of world war 3 you never know just maybe others this time might get involved are we ready to fight at home if we are attacked??

    September 5, 2013 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  15. Woman In California

    The total disrespect in this is not only disturbing it's downright scary. Neither Sen. Reid or Speaker Boehner deserve any congratulations from me–for doing what ANY person in their respective positions should do when referring to themselves an American. Sooner or later, I can't help but wonder if temptation will eventually grab hold of some un-American troublemaker and win.

    September 5, 2013 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  16. Richard Koury

    What are they afraid of? They might get an education in how to run a country.

    September 5, 2013 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  17. Woman In California

    Correction: when referring to themselves AS an American.

    September 5, 2013 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  18. Ling

    The US congressmen came to Russia after Boston attack and were greeted by Russian Parliament members and provided access to classified information that Russia was in possession of. The US doesn't look good in this case, reciprocity is a basic diplomacy principle. It seams that everything has already been decided regarding Syria war, somebody in Israel or elsewhere needs it badly.

    September 5, 2013 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  19. TomNPitt

    Your first mistake is quoting Rand Paul on war. He barely knows how to get out of Kentucky. I am stunned at how gutless Americans are with this topic. They gassed their own people. Ten years ago we went hog wild to get Saddam out of office because he did that. Now we want more roof before we go in. Last month everybody wanted Obama to do something because of all the killing. Now everyone's wringing their hands before they even know what the plan is. It's what The former Governor of PA, Ed Rendell said – "It's the pussification of America"!!

    September 5, 2013 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  20. are122

    I see no logical reason for them refusing to speak with the Russians. I think it is stupid. If they have differences why not talk about it. Pious air head bunch politicians.

    September 5, 2013 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  21. Jon

    Republicans only want a war that will line their pockets. Not enough money in this one for their taste.

    September 5, 2013 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  22. bryan

    why do the Russians have to come here to the US. they have an embassy. if they want diplomacy all they have to do is pick up the phone. They are not to be trusted because they want to protect Asaad their ally. If you use chemical weapons on children then he's got what's coming. use the drones.

    September 5, 2013 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  23. dotheflippin'math

    All the Russians care about is money. They do a LOT of business with both Syria and Iran. They sell both countries fuel and weapons, which would hurt their economy if lost. I say we make a deal with the Ruskies. You stay out of the way, and you can have all of Iran's oil fields and Syria's riches, after we remove their leaders, plus we will reimburse you for the lost business. Russia is like the NRA of Asia. They don't care who dies, as long as they can sell their weapons. Unfortunately, China also does business with both countries. All four countries have less morals than a meth dealer.

    September 5, 2013 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  24. Nodack

    I guess some Republicans really do love their country more than they hate Obama. I'm not surprised Reid said no, but I am surprised Boehner said no. Maybe there is hope.

    September 6, 2013 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  25. james

    People, really, what do you think they'll say about a senator who meets with the Russians behind his president's back? The article should get some response from Reid. I'm sure he'd be willing to be a member of an organized delegation that includes Obama and Boehner. Don't let your prejudice make you look ignorant.

    September 6, 2013 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
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