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"Putin" is the number one USA trend on Twitter as of this writing, which is always a reliable sign that something very stupid is happening in American media.
"Putin" is once again the hysterical shrieking buzzword of the day because Donald Trump openly boasted at a press conference of having had an hour-long phone call with the Russian president, in which he claims the two leaders discussed nuclear de-escalation, Venezuela, North Korea, and the discredited "collusion" narrative. When asked whether he'd told Putin not to meddle in the 2020 US elections, Trump replied, "We didn't discuss that."
"Had a long and very good conversation with President Putin of Russia," the president tweeted. "As I have always said, long before the Witch Hunt started, getting along with Russia, China, and everyone is a good thing, not a bad thing. We discussed Trade, Venezuela, Ukraine, North Korea, Nuclear Arms Control and even the 'Russian Hoax.' Very productive talk!"
Had a long and very good conversation with President Putin of Russia. As I have always said, long before the Witch Hunt started, getting along with Russia, China, and everyone is a good thing, not a bad thing....
Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 3, 2019
So of course everyone is now in garment-rending apocalyptic DEFCON 1 catastrophe mode.
"It bears repeating: We have been given no indication that Trump or his re-election campaign will hesitate to take advantage of Russian help again in 2020, in whatever form it might take," warned the Wall Street Journal's Dustin Volz.
"President Trump today continues to belittle Russian election interference in the 2016 presidential election, as well as continued election interference," CNN's Jake Tapper solemnly warned today. "The president went on to tell reporters later that he did not tell Putin to stop engaging in election interference which remains, according to Trump's own top national security officials, a continuing threat to the United States. Based on the president's public statements, and apparently his private one with Vladimir Putin, the man who led and continues to lead cyber-attacks on the United States, the president's more concerned with underlining that Special Counsel Robert Mueller was unable to find sufficient evidence that any member of his team was involved in criminal conspiracy with Russia."
"The simple fact is this: Trump remains -- despite all available evidence -- a skeptic about both Russia's past attempts at interference in the 2016 election and, therefore, the country's attempts to target future elections," warns CNN's Cris Cillizza. "That skepticism could have far reaching consequences when it comes to just how much (or little) the administration prioritizes dealing with these threats from foreign powers heading into the 2020 election. And that is a truly scary reality."
"The 2020 campaign is already in full swing and Trump just told Putin, the man behind the most serious cyber attack on our democracy ever, that he believes it was all a hoax," tweeted Congressman and virulent Russiagater Adam Schiff. "Once again, he betrays our national security and for what? Nothing more than his own vanity and delusion."
"Exactly what Putin wanted and expected," tweeted MSNBC's Clint Watts. "This is why Russia backed Trump, elevate politicians to achieve what Russia wants -- to subvert and weaken democracy, surrender the world to authoritarians, like the Kremlin."
Exactly what Putin wanted and expected. This is why Russia backed Trump, elevate politicians to achieve what Russia wants -- to subvert and weaken democracy, surrender the world to authoritarians, like the Kremlin https://t.co/WVyMhSyFjY- Advertisement -
Clint Watts (@selectedwisdom) May 3, 2019
So the narrative in mainstream liberal circles today is that Putin is going to interfere in the 2020 elections, and, because that interference will surely advantage Trump, there will be no resistance to that interference.