As bad as the Islamic State is, Russia poses a larger threat to security across the planet, at least, according to Senator John McCain (R-Arizona). The former presidential candidate was recently interviewed by the show “7:30,” which runs on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. During that interview, he said that Vladimir Putin is “the premier and most important threat, more so than ISIS.”
When discussing the Russian threat, McCain mentioned their efforts to interfere with elections across the globe. 17 United States intelligence agencies say that Russia tried to meddle in our elections last year. He told the Australian media network, “It’s the Russians who tried to destroy the fundamental of democracy and that is to change the outcome of an American election.” While he does not think that Russia had an actual impact on the 2016 elections, he says that he believes they did work to alter the outcome and will continue to work towards that goal.
McCain is also concerned about the lack of any real American response to the allegations of Russian meddling in the elections. He noted that the country “has done nothing since the election last November to respond to Vladimir Putin’s attempt to change the outcome of our elections. So, way to go Vladimir. We haven’t responded at all.” He has said that he thinks we need to step up the sanctions on Russia.
The McCain interview comes at the same time that new questions about communications between Jared Kushner and the Russian government have been raised. It appears that Kushner communicated with high level Russian officials during the transition, and then again after Trump took office. Some reports indicate Kushner was trying to set up a back channel to communicate with the Kremlin that would prevent U.S. intelligence agencies from listening in, using Russian equipment at their facilities.