First on CNN: Russians turned down, again
September 5th, 2013
05:28 PM ET
9 years 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. sly

    Very simple issue:

    99% of the UN signed the Chemical Weapons treaty. Thank you President Obama for holding them to their word.

    Putin simply asked for clear evidence, and that has not been provided yet.

    Non-story – if the evidence is clear, let's retaliate, and we WILL have Russian support. If the evidence is not clear, unfortunately Assad got away with it. His day will come though, soon.

    September 6, 2013 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    I wish I could have heard Sen. Reid turn them down in that whispery voice of his. He's a boxer from back in the day. He can throw a good jab when he needs to. This one required a knock out punch, so that they won't come back and harass others.

    September 6, 2013 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  3. Nothing At All

    Senators and Congressman were not elected to meet with foreign delegations regarding national policy.

    September 6, 2013 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  4. Michael

    All of the saber rattling is getting both worrisome and bothersome. One, there is no proof of which side actually launched the chemical attack. Two, the US has ZERO natiional security interests in Syria. Three, not only is a vast majority of Americans against any involvement but so are many world leaders from the Pope to the UK. If your staunchest ally is against military action, the executive branch (and the Military Industrial Complex) should listen. Were it up to me, I'd talk to teh Russions to get their viewpoints stright from the horse's mouth ... weigh ALL options before even thinking about any military action.

    September 6, 2013 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  5. Jules

    Let's see, Russia gave Snowden asylum, they defend Syria no matter what inhumane things they do plus Putin still has the Super Bowl ring. The Russians should be turned away.

    September 6, 2013 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  6. tiffinS

    The Obama administration has turned this country into the laughing stock of the world. I will say the reverse of what Michelle Obama said: "For the first time of my life, I am ashamed of this Country!"

    September 6, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  7. tiffinS


    I always knew Reid was a louse, but this is the time for diplomacy to get to work.

    Reid turning down the Russians is a slap in the face to diplomacy.

    "When in doubt, don't send missiles out."

    Rand Paul 2016.


    The Russians motive is not diplomacy , it's a power play to divide . These are the same people that wont extradite Edward Snowden . There only purpose is to continue to have Syria as customer and ally . And by not going through normal channels they divide and diminish . They could have done more then use there UN veto to bring diplomacy and a solution , they did not , nor did China . China and Russia wont take refugees !

    As for the Aqua Buddha 2016 , why not Michele Bachmann or Donald Duck ?
    Why not Al Sharpton, Rachel Maddow or Foghorn Leghorn? Clearly heads and shouldler above the current DNC trash.

    September 6, 2013 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  8. Name Uche Agonsi

    what i dont understand is the need for this strange feelings and tough posturings over the Russian select diplomacy. US does not have to pre-empt nor prejudge the Russian intentions. They only need to hear from them. I have a strong notion the Sec Kerry is just evolving the old JFK foreign policy playbook on the Obama Administration. The senario is not the same. Besides, without talking we sow feud and war. Thats a gong the modern day world should not bargain for.

    September 6, 2013 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  9. Widow

    They won't meet b/c they don't want to accidentally give any idea of what they are doing. It is pretty obvious the US has made a decision on Syria.. Just have to wait till the bombs start falling

    September 6, 2013 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  10. gabberjaw

    We have to go back 68 years when George Patton wanted to take out the Russians after WW11, if Trueman had let another four bombs drop, this would never have come to pass. The millions of people the Russians killed in their own country would never have transpired. As for Russia today they need the rest of the free world to survive, they're not going to bite the hand that feeds them. Besides like another poster said, congress and the senate don't set foriegn policy as individuals, otherwise America would be Russia.

    September 6, 2013 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
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