Time for Tough Talk With Putin?

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US President Barack Obama (L) holds a bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin during the G8 summit at the Lough Erne resort near Enniskillen in Northern Ireland, on June 17, 2013.
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Today, President Obama will formally meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin for the first time since Russia annexed Crimea and armed secessionist rebels in eastern Ukraine.

The presidents have plenty to discuss. In addition to Ukraine, Obama plans to press Putin on Russia's support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and he'll assess Russia's potential as an ally against the self-proclaimed Islamic State.

When it comes to Putin, President Obama has taken a lot of heat over the last few years, mostly from Republicans who want to see him take a tougher hand against the Russian leader.

Senator John McCain (R-AZ) wanted the Obama Administration to send arms to Ukraine back in April 2014. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) also chastised Obama after Malaysian Airlines flight 17 crashed in Eastern Ukraine in July 2014.

"President Obama's trying to be deliberative; it comes off as indecisive," Sen. Graham said told the news program "Meet the Press." "He's trying to be thoughtful; it comes off as weakness."

Kimberly Marten, professor of political science at Columbia University's Barnard College, assess President Obama's response to Putin since Obama took office, and discusses whether it's time for a tougher stance on Russia. 

What you'll learn from this segment:

  • How Russia is connected to the Iran Nuclear Deal.
  • What the Russian military strategy is in Syria.
  • Whether Russia can be an effective ally in the fight against ISIS.