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Jill Stein equates Russian election interference with US espionage

Washington(CNN) Green Party 2016 presidential candidate Jill Stein downplayed Russia's meddling in the 2016 US election on Tuesday by pointing to US overseas intelligence efforts.

Asked on CNN's "New Day" by co-anchor Chris Cuomo if she still harbors reservations that Russia interfered in the 2016 election with negative intent, Stein said, "I think it would be naive to think that Russia did not try to interfere."

But, she said, "Certainly that's what the United States does," though she added, "that's not to justify it."

"Interference is wrong and it's an assault against democracy, and it should be pursued, but (the United States) should pursue it knowing that we do it, too."

"From the American perspective and you running for president, more than once of this country, shouldn't your position have been, 'This was bad what they did. They're trying to do it right now and we have to stop it?'" Cuomo asked.

"I think that kind of position, which says that we're in a totally different category from the rest of the world, is not working," Stein answered.

She went on to add later, "We're in a multipolar world right now and we need to behave as an exemplary member of the community and that is by upholding ourselves and leading the way on international law, human rights and diplomacy."