GOP senator warns against trusting Putin 'mafia' - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

GOP senator warns against trusting Putin 'mafia'

By LISA MASCARO
AP Congressional Correspondent

WASHINGTON (AP) - A U.S. senator who just returned from a congressional trip to Russia is warning against trusting President Vladimir Putin. He also says that dealing with the Russian government is like "dealing with the mafia."

Republican Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana recently went with other GOP senators to see first-hand the Russian economy and meet with government officials.

But he says the meetings turned "cantankerous" at times. He described Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov as a "bully." He says there's no political philosophy in Russia, just a philosophy of money and power.

The senator says he had no problem with President Donald Trump meeting privately with Putin. They're set for a planned summit July 16. But he said he doesn't expect a diplomatic breakthrough. "You can't trust Putin," the senator says.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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