Apr 7, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Turner: Russian propaganda "being uttered on the House floor"

House Intelligence Committee Chair Mike Turner (R-Ohio) said Sunday that it's "absolutely true" that Russian propaganda has made its way into Congress.

Why it matters: Turner joins a growing line of GOP figures speaking out about it, including House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Michael McCaul (R-Texas), who said Russian propaganda has "infected a good chunk of my party's base."

What he's saying: "We see directly coming from Russia attempts to mask communications that are anti-Ukraine and pro-Russia messages, some of which we even hear being uttered on the House floor," Turner said on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday.

  • Turner said there are "members of Congress today who still incorrectly say that this conflict between Russia and Ukraine is over NATO, which of course it is not."
  • "Now, to the extent that this propaganda takes hold, it makes it more difficult for us to really see this as an authoritarian versus democracy battle, which is what it is," he added.

Catch up quick: McCaul appeared to place blame on conservative news outlets for what he sees as Russian propaganda making its way into parts of the GOP, per an earlier interview with Puck News.

  • "There are some more nighttime entertainment shows that seem to spin, like, I see the Russian propaganda in some of it — and it's almost identical [to what they're saying on Russian state television] — on our airwaves," he told Puck News.
  • Asked whether he has any examples of Republicans parroting Russian propaganda, McCaul said he thinks "it's pretty obvious."

Zoom out: Turner also said Ukraine "needs our help and assistance now," adding that "this is a very critical time for the U.S. Congress to step up and provide that aid."

  • House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) has signaled that the coming weeks will be a make-or-break period on Ukraine and other foreign aid funding, Axios' Andrew Solender reports.

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