We know Trump by the company he keeps, and what he is willing to talk about.
Donald Trump placed a phone call to Vladimir Putin today to congratulate Putin on his victory in the Russian “election.” In today’s White House Press Briefing, Sarah Huckabee-Sanders was asked whether Trump addressed the Russian interference in our elections. Huckabee-Sanders said that “no” it had not come up. I do not have transcripts, so I cannot quote directly, but Huckabee-Sanders stated that it was not an appropriate time to discuss such a troublesome topic. Huckabee-Sanders said that it has been addressed “before” but gave no examples of when the president did bring the matter to Putin’s attention.
Trump “congratulated” a man on winning an “election” when just two days ago video came out, confirmed by multiple major news sources, of people stuffing ballot boxes with Putin votes. Throughout history, the United States has been the world’s necessary leader in fighting for free and fair elections. When asked about the fairness of the elections, when everyone with eyeballs could see and not deny the “steal,” Huckabee-Sanders specifically refused to criticize by stating that it is not the United States’ place to interfere or discuss other countries’ elections. The irony simply burns, not just because it surely did used to be the United States’ place to fight for democracy on the world stage, but also because it is established fact that Trump benefited from Russia doing all it could to ensure that the United States did not enjoy a “free and fair” election, either. Yet, apparently, Trump believed “congratulations” were in order. Perhaps Trump believed that getting away with stealing elections is a notable accomplishment deserving of a phone call from a friend.
Trump also placed the call to congratulate a man whom one of the United States’ closest allies – the United Kingdon – regards as a murderer. The United Kingdon recently kicked out the highest number of Russian spies ever in response to an overt act of war on UK soil. Yet, Trump placed the call to congratulate him.
A reporter asked Huckabee-Sanders whether or not Trump had called Angele Merkel to congratulate her on her recent victory. Huckabee-Sanders referenced a later phone call that occurred just a week ago, but it became clear through the “non-answer” that the president had not immediately lifted the phone to congratulate an ally who had won a free and fair election. Then again, Angela Merkel is considered by many to be the de facto leader of the “free world” and is an accomplished progressive woman. Of course, we know that Trump disdains few people more than accomplished progressive women.
Again, you can learn a great deal about a person by the company they keep. Our president calls murderers who steal elections, and not brilliant women who lead progressive democracies.