MCCONNELL:"So, Mr. President, I don’t normally take the time to respond to critics in the media when they have no clue what they’re talking about, but this modern-day McCarthyism is toxic and damaging because of the way it warps our entire public discourse. Facts matter. Details matter. History matters. And if our nation is losing its ability to debate public policy without screaming about treason, that really matters. In the middle of the 20th century, the original McCarthyism hurt America’s strength and diminished our standing in a Cold War by dividing us against ourselves and letting lives, innuendo, and baseless accusations crowd out reasonable politics. The frenetic politicized witch hunt distracted from legitimate efforts to contest the Soviet Union, including more sober efforts to root out real Soviet agents in our midst. In short, McCarthyism did the Russians’ work for them. McCarthyism did the work for the Russians. Now, here we are in 2019. Again, Putin and the Russians seek to provoke fear and division in our country. To undermine faith in our institutions, to exacerbate our political differences until we tear ourselves apart. And once again, it seems there are some who blindly take the bait. American pundits calling an American official treasonous because of a policy disagreement. If anything is an asset to the Russians, it is disgusting behavior like that."