Friday, June 15, 2018


In the midst of all the craziness going on today, there's this:
President Donald Trump told reporters on Friday “it’s possible” he will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin this summer.

A meeting between Trump and Putin was raised when the two leaders spoke by phone in April. Earlier this week, a senior director for Europe and Russia on the National Security Council, Richard Hooker, told a Russian news agency that the White House is exploring the idea.
I don't know whether this will happen, but the fact that Trump is considering it says to me that he thinks it will help Republicans in the midterms.

He's undoubtedly aware of polling that suggests that his summit with Kim Jong Un was well received by the American public. But that's because it's assumed that the summit could decrease the likelihood of a nuclear war. Meeting with Putin accomplishes ... what exactly? Apart from giving Trump an.opportunity to kiss up to his patron?

Despite softening among GOP voters, public opinion of Putin isn't very good: In a CNN poll last month, 77% of Americans had an unfavorable opinion of the Russian, while 11% had a favorable one. In a March CBS poll, the numbers were 5% favorable, 56% unfavorable.

But I think Trump believes that his meetings with tyrants make him look statesmanlike and Nobel-worthy, and therefore help his party. Either that or, in a Manafortian way, he has a compulsion to consort with the bad guys even as the legal noose tightens around him.

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