OPINION | What has Putin got on Trump?

President Donald Trump and Russia’s president Vladimir Putin seem to be linked in some way, shape, or form. There is evidence of it everywhere. It’s…

President Donald Trump and Russia’s president Vladimir Putin seem to be linked in some way, shape, or form. There is evidence of it everywhere. It’s in Trump’s elected position, the new US/Russian relations, and the budding friendship between Trump and Putin. Let’s see if we can try and break down all of these links, and what they mean. 

Trump was elected president of the United States in 2016. Since that day forth, there has been speculation that his election was not truthful. Trump has denied any claims that Russia was involved in his victory. But in January of 2017, US Intelligence announced that Trump’s victory was due to Russian interference. Trump denied the claims for over a year; publicly siding with Putin, who denied interfering, while at the Helsinki convention this month. But the very next day after making such a statement, Trump did a 180 and stated that Russia could have meddled in the election, but also added: “It could be other people also. A lot of people out there.” 

It is pretty clear Russia had an influence on the election, and favored Trump as their choice. In the US Intelligence report, it was stated: “the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump…” It was revealed recently that Russia was involved with Wikileaks and Hillary Clinton stated the owner of Wikileaks Julian Assange is a “tool of Russian intelligence.” Trump acknowledging Russia, or any other country, had influence on the election results would mean he is aware he did not win the election fairly.  

It could be concluded that since Trump and Putin seem to be besties, that US-Russian relations would be copacetic. But this seems to be quite the opposite. Trump stated in a recent interview that “he has been “far tougher on Russia than any president in many, many years.”” And then went on to say that if dealings with Putin didn’t work out, that he will be the worst enemy [Putin] has ever had. It seems Trump is trying to deny any idea that he is under Russia/Putin’s control. Why he is trying to deny any connection is probably to save his own skin. But this is not the first time Trump has been caught in a lie involving Russia. 

Before his inauguration, Trump stated that he had no dealings and no connections to Russia. But this is false.  

In 2013, Trump stated in a New York real-estate publication that “The Russian Market is attracted to me.” It actually goes even further back than that, when Trump visited the country in 1987 to check out potential sites. In 1996, Trump announced plans for a $250 million investment in a site. Russia has returned the favor with investments in Trump’s projects as well. In 2013, Trump brought his Miss Universe Pageant to Moscow and joked “”Do you think Putin will be going to The Miss Universe Pageant in November in Moscow — if so, will he become my new best friend?””  

There have been some memes floating around on the internet displaying Trump’s friendship. 

It seems to be only a matter of time until all is revealed. Does Trump want US-Russia relations to work out for his own financial benefit? Or to stay in office? And what would could better US-Russia relations mean for Americans?  

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