Jeffrey Goldberg to Sen. Tom Cotton: You Would Go Ballistic If Obama Said What Trump Said About U.S. And Russia

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JEFFREY GOLDBERG, THE ATLANTIC: Senator Cotton, it's Jeff Goldberg. You and I have spoken quite a bit about Putin and Donald Trump. And my question is simply this: if President Obama had said, made the moral equation between the United States and Russia I don't think your reaction would have been the same. I mean so why are you so forgiving of Donald Trump when I think you would have gone ballistic--

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Yeah, you're not a guy who minces words.

GOLDBERG: You would have gone totally ballistic, maybe appropriately so, if President Obama had said, look we're no better than Russia.

SEN. TOM COTTON (R-Ark.): Jeff, please, I never go ballistic, I'm always measured and tempered.

BRZEZINSKI: Ha!

GOLDBERG: He's anti-ballistic; he hates the Iranian ballistic missile program.

(LAUGHTER)

GOLDBERG: He's terribly anti-ballistic.

(LAUGHTER)

COTTON: Jeff, again, we're two weeks into the administration. A lot of my opposition to President Obama's policies had behind them 5, 6, 7 years of bad policies that made America less safe in my regard. I think it's appropriate that we take a moment to judge the whole circumstances of what President Trump has said and the policies he's going to pursue.

GOLDBERG: You're very forgiving.

COTTON: Before we reach a definitive judgment. We're still just three weeks into his presidency.

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