Secretary of State Brian Kemp (left) and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle during the second and final televised GOP gubernatorial runoff debate at a Channel 2 Action News studio on July 15, 2018. The runoff to decide the Republican candidate for governor will be held July 24. (Jenna Eason /
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Cagle on Trump’s summit with Putin: ‘I don’t think he sided with Russia’

Oh, the joys of Facebook town halls. 

Late last week, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle conducted a social media forum and took questions ranging from his views on abortion (tougher laws are needed, he said) to a voter fighting with her homeowners association (he politely offered his staff’s help). 

On Tuesday, he conducted another one and was quickly confronted with a question about President Donald Trump’s summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. 

“How do you feel about POTUS siding with Russia?” 

Republicans have generally had two approaches to this line of inquiry: Condemning Russia and criticizing Trump for not presenting a staunch defense of U.S. intelligence agencies. Or praising Trump for agreeing to the summit while downplaying his comments. 

U.S. Sen. David Perdue took the latter approach. And so did Cagle, wary of being seen as anything other than supportive of Trump ahead of a July 24 runoff. 

“I don’t think he sided with Russia,” wrote Cagle, or someone on his campaign staff. “I do think he has taken meaningful steps to engage with a long time adversary and improve the relationship.”

We reached out to Secretary of State Brian Kemp, his GOP adversary, on the same topic. He and his campaign staff stuck to a loyalty theme: 

"Hard working Americans picked their president in November 2016 - not Russians. Politically driven people can investigate all they want but the facts remain - Trump won. Hillary lost. America will be a better place if the media and radical left just accept reality and allow President Trump to continue in his efforts to put Americans - and our security - first.”

 Insider’s note: This item was ripped from the Morning Jolt.

About the Author

Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He joined the newspaper...

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