One of President-elect Donald Trump’s potential selections for secretary of state dismissed allegations of Russian human rights abuses as “baloney” during an interview Wednesday with Yahoo News.
During the interview, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) called China the worst human rights abuser in the world and said he wants “a better relationship” with Russia.
“There’s a bunch of people here who want to treat it like it’s still the Soviet Union and get in the Cold War,” Rohrabacher said. “That’s not what Donald Trump wants. It’s not good for America, and it’s better to cooperate with them to actually take on real enemies.”
Anchor Bianna Golodryga pressed the lawmaker about Russia’s record on human rights: “When you talk about human rights abusers in China, much can be said about Russia as well in that regard.”
“Oh, baloney,” Rohrabacher replied. “Where do you come from?”
“I come from the former Soviet Union, that’s where I came from,” Golodryga said. “I came here as a political refugee. That’s where I came from.”
“Oh, OK,” Rohrabacher said. “What country did you say you came from?”
“I come from the former Soviet Union, from Moldova,” Golodryga said.
“Oh, well then that’s good, then the audience knows that you are biased,” Rohrabacher said.
Golodryga shot back: “I’m biased because I am an American citizen who was born in a foreign country?”
Rohrabacher argued that the countries aren’t equivalent when it comes to human rights, and Golodryga maintained that both are human rights abusers.
When Golodryga noted that Russia has been accused of murdering journalists, Rohrabacher said, “I’ll let the public decide with that last comment where you’re coming from.”
Rohrabacher touted his time working for President Ronald Reagan and said the former president, who famously called the Soviet Union "evil," would “love” his position on Russia.
Politico once dubbed Rohrabacher Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “favorite congressman.”
Rohrabacher’s office did not immediately return TheBlaze’s request for comment.