Schumer slams Putin for "aiding and abetting" Snowden's escape

Schumer accused Russia of putting "a finger in the eye of the United States" by allowing Snowden's flight to land

Published June 23, 2013 2:49PM (EDT)

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, accused Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday of "aiding and abetting" NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden's escape and putting "a finger in the eye of the United States" by allowing the former NSA contractor to land in Moscow after departing Hong Kong.

Schumer appeared on "State of the Union" just as news broke that Snowden's flight had arrived in Moscow, and the senator told Candy Crowley that there may be "serious consequences" in store for Russia:

SCHUMER: What’s infuriating here is Prime Minister Putin of Russia aiding and abetting Snowden’s escape. The bottom line is very simple. Allies are supposed to treat each other in decent ways, and Putin always seems almost eager to put a finger in the eye of the United States, whether it is Syria, Iran, and now, of course, with Snowden. That’s not how allies should treat one another, and I think it will have serious consequences for the United States-Russia relationship. [...]

CROWLEY: And just could you tell me a couple of what those — what serious consequences?

SCHUMER: Well, who knows? We have all kinds of relationships with Russia, and in some ways it works out pretty well. We’re trying to mutually reduce the number of nuclear arms that each country has. But there are many different kinds of relationships that are political, economic. And I don’t think we can shrug our shoulders and say this is how Putin is.


By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at

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Chuck Schumer Edward Snowden National Security Nsa Nsa Leaks Russia Vladimir Putin