The most well-documented Russia apologist in Congress, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), criticized the recent indictment of a 29-year-old woman who allegedly attempted to set up a back channel between Russia and U.S. politicians through the NRA.
Rohrabacher called the indictment of Mariia Butina “bogus,” according to Politico. Butina, according to the indictment, allegedly spoke with a Russian official about his plans to “meet with a U.S. Congressman during a Congressional Delegation trip to Moscow in August 2015.” Rohrabacher said he’s unaware if he is the member of Congress mentioned in the indictment, but told Politico he had dinner with Butina, “along with another member, along with a visiting delegation to Russia.”
“It’s ridiculous. It’s stupid,” Rohrabacher told Politico. “She’s the assistant of some guy who is the head of the bank and is a member of their Parliament. That’s what we call a spy? That shows you how bogus this whole thing is. … This is an attempt to undermine the president’s ability to have better relationships with Russia.”
While Rohrabacher has repeatedly found himself in the middle of incidents being investigated by special counsel Robert Mueller, he hasn’t been accused of any misconduct. He told Politico he thinks he should be exempt of any wrongdoing in relation to his communications with Russian officials because he is the “chairman of the committee who has jurisdiction to oversee America’s relations with Russia.”
Butina was indicted this week for conspiring against the United States and failing to register as a foreign agent.