Vladimir Putin Has Some Praise For Donald Trump

Russian President Vladimir Putin had some praise for Donald Trump of all people.

Vladimir Putin Sunglasses

Vladimir Putin had some kind words for Donald Trump at his traditional end of the year press conference:

Donald Trump has said that he would “get along very well” with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The feeling is apparently mutual.

Putin offered high praise for the billionaire businessman-turned-Republican presidential front-runner on Thursday during an annual news conference with reporters.

“He is a bright and talented person without any doubt,” Putin said, adding that Trump is “an outstanding and talented personality.”

And in remarks closely mirroring Trump’s assessment of the campaign, the Russian leader called Trump “the absolute leader of the presidential race,” according to the Russian TASS news agen

While most Republican presidential contenders have demonized the Russian president — including calling him a “gangster” and a “thug” — and pushed plans to isolate Russia on the world stage, Trump has instead touted his ability to improve Washington-Moscow relations by working with the iron-fisted Russian leader.

Trump has repeatedly touted his joint appearance with Putin on an episode of CBS’s “60 Minutes” this fall, referring to himself and Putin as “stablemates.”

Trump said in October that he and Putin “are very different” but suggested that the two men could move beyond the frigid relations that have come to define U.S.-Russia relations under President Barack Obama.

“I think that I would at the same time get along very well with him. He does not like Obama at all. He doesn’t respect Obama at all. And I’m sure that Obama doesn’t like him very much,” Trump said then. “But I think that I would probably get along with him very well. And I don’t think you’d be having the kind of problems that you’re having right now.”

Putin referenced Trump’s reported desire “to reach another, deeper level of relations” with Russia in his remarks Thursday.

“What else can we do but to welcome it? Certainly, we welcome it,” Putin said.

While fellow Republican contenders have been highly skeptical of stepped up Russian military involvement in Syria, Trump has welcomed it.

Trump suggested in the his September “60 Minutes” appearance that the U.S. should avoid deepening its involvement in Syria, instead allowing Russia to take a leading role in combating the radical Islamist group that has called for attacks on the U.S.

“Russia wants to get rid of ISIS. We want to get rid of ISIS. Maybe let Russia do it. Let them get rid of ISIS. What the hell do we care?” Trump said, despite U.S. wariness of Russia’s presence in Syria, which is mainly aimed at bolstering the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad, who the Obama administration has called for to leave.

Trump’s comments about Putin and his belief that he could work with him is, of course, all part of the overall message of the Trump campaign that argues that, because of his business and negotiating experience, Trump is the only candidate who is best equipped to represent the United States on the international stage. His comment, then, aren’t meant so much to build up Putin with effusive praise but to communicate the message, false though it may be, that Donald Trump can negotiate circles around anyone, even the  supposedly cunning leader of Russia who has seemingly only gained in power and influence over the past decade. Additionally, to some extent one suspects that Trump’s seemingly effusive praise for Putin over the past several months is as much about tweaking the Administration, and Hillary Clinton, than anything else. While he has confined most of his attacks to his fellow Republicans, Trump does occasionally slip into criticism of the President and Hillary Clinton and their performance on the world stage. Praising Putin just seems to be another part of that.

As for Putin, I suppose this is just another example of the manner in which he seems to get some joy out of playing with the West in the international media. I don’t believe there’s any record that Trump and Putin have ever actually met, so it’s hard to say if Putin has any personal opinion of the man, but it hardly matters since he is no doubt getting no small degree of enjoyment out of the fact that a billionaire celebrity mostly known for ostentatious displays of wealth and testosterone is presently leading in the race for the nomination of one of the two major political parties in the United States. One also suspects that he sees Trump much they way Trump apparently sees him, as someone he could easily manage on the world stage due in no small part to his inexperience and mostly substance-free bravado. Of course, given the image that both men have sought to project on the world stage it’s possible that Putin can relate to Trump, and that Trump can relate to Putin. And, who knows? Maybe this will all end in a Trump-Putin buddy movie.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2016, US Politics, ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. grumpy realist says:

    As I mentioned on the other thread, this is simply Putin-speak for “Donald Trump is the easiest of all of the candidates for me to manipulate. His ego will get in the way of everything and I can run rings around him.”

  2. CSK says:

    A buddy movie. I can dig it. Just like those ancient Hope-Crosby road pictures.

    Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump in: The Road to Perdition.

    I can see them fighting over who gets top billing.

  3. CSK says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Exactly.

  4. ernieyeball says:

    Donald Trump has said that he would “get along very well” with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
    The feeling is apparently mutual.
    Putin offered high praise for the billionaire businessman-turned-Republican presidential front-runner on Thursday during an annual news conference with reporters.

    This sounds like a two man circle jerk. Somehow I am not surprised.
    After all what we have here is a couple of first class pricks.

  5. cd6 says:

    Obviously this is just strength recognizing strength. Democracy or despotism aside, smart people (like me) want to be led by strong, victorious men like Putin and Trump.

    Sissy wimp liberals like the rest of you prefer soft skinned, limp handed dictators like Charles II, Hillary Clinton, or Steve Jobs.

    If my next door neighbor or my tennis partner were getting beat up in a dark alley, I hope a pray that a strong, brave patriot like Vladimir Putin is standing nearby, and not a nancypants wiener like Jimmy Carter. You can’t build houses to stop a mugging.

  6. anjin-san says:

    @cd6:

    You are missing something pretty fundamental here – Putin would be the one beating up your next door neighbor. And you can bet he would have a few bruisers on hand to make sure no one interferes.

    The strong impulse that conservatives seem to have to grovel before authoritarian figures is remarkable. No one had to tread on you guys, you actually seem anxious to bend the knee to a “strong” leader…

  7. C. Clavin says:

    Putin and Trump are both fascists…so I think this all makes perfect sense.
    For Republicans Putin is the dream leader…half Dick Cheney, half Mike Huckabee. Many Republicans praise him. Guiliani, Lindsey Graham, and Rep. Mike Rogers have. Palin had a wet dream about him wrasslin’ bears.
    Russia is already the country Republicans want to live in.
    I say…have at it…move.

  8. C. Clavin says:

    @cd6:

    my tennis partner

    really…that you and your tennis partner want to be led around by strong brave patriots is not indicative of any sort of tendencies that are not normal…if you like that sort of thing, that is.

  9. anjin-san says:

    @cd6:

    tennis partner

    Wow, it’s hard to believe an obvious alpha male such as yourself plays a prissy sport like tennis 🙂

  10. CSK says:

    @cd6:

    This is satire, right?

  11. Mikey says:

    @CSK: I’m quite certain it is satire, given the all-to-obvious cribbing from the currently vacationing M. Reynolds.

  12. C. Clavin says:

    OT….
    Earlier this week we found out that theSan Bernadino killers DID NOT pledge allegiance to ISIS on social media.
    http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-ln-fbi-san-bernardino-social-media-20151216-story.html
    Now we find out that they got some of their guns thru an illegal purchase that the NRA would just as soon was legal.

    Federal investigators have alleged that two of the semiautomatic rifles used in the deadly attack were straw purchases made by Marquez and given to Farook as a favor.

    http://billmoyers.com/2013/04/04/nra-demands-softer-penalties-for-straw-purchasers/
    Can you say domestic terrorism sponsored by the NRA?

  13. Rafer Janders says:

    @anjin-san:

    Adjust your sarcasm detectors, anjin-san.

  14. anjin-san says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Oh, I was pretty sure it was snark, but it’s so spot on it deserves a reply…

  15. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Birds of a feather flock together. In this case a pair of turkey buzzards.

  16. Surreal American says:

    @anjin-san:

    Poe’s Law is harsh, but fair.

  17. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I really, really hope that Trump does not try to out-macho Putin by taking a shirtless horseback ride through Central Park. That image I do not wish to view.

  18. grumpy realist says:

    @CSK: I should fine you for the amount of brain bleach necessary to remove that image from the mental hash tables. Yipe.

  19. CSK says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Yeah, I know; please accept my apologies, especially as the cocktail/dinner hour approaches. Trump appears to have the physical tone of a six-foot-two vertical slug, one of those limp pallid things you find when you overturn a rock in the vegetable garden. But here’s the thing: If he did pose this way, the Trumpkins would be swooning about what a great bod he has. He is, after all, the healthiest person who will ever occupy the presidency.

  20. grumpy realist says:

    @CSK: What was the description I ran across earlier of Trump? “A sepia-toned barrage balloon”?

  21. C. Clavin says:

    @grumpy realist:
    With his comb-over flying in the breeze…and his man-boobs jiggling!!!
    In slow-motion!!!!

  22. grumpy realist says:

    OT, but has anyone been following this about Shkreli? It’s hilarious.

    When Donald Trump calls you “a spoiled brat”, you know you’ve basically left the realm of civilization.

  23. grumpy realist says:

    Oh my goodness (from the above article):

    Shkreli shorted 32 million shares of Orexigen on Feb. 1, 2011, when it was trading about $2.50 per share.

    This was a massive bet that it would fall from there. But what was curious about this trade was that Orexigen shares had just taken a huge hit, falling from $9.09 the day before, when the Food and Drug Administration had issued a report questioning the obesity drug’s cardiovascular safety. Shkreli, in other words, shorted at the low. Orexigen bounced back, gaining more than 50% from its lows over the next few days and ending the month up more than 30% from where Shkreli had shorted. Because short-trades lose money when the stock rises, Shkreli’s trade was blown to smithereens.

    What I want to know is who are the guys who invested with this idiot? I have a few bridges to sell them.

  24. CSK says:

    @grumpy realist:

    @C. Clavin:

    I realize I started this, but come on, you’re giving me the dry heaves.

  25. the Q says:

    Ok, we all realize Trump is unhinged on many levels BUT…Is anyone going to really argue against this: “Trump suggested in the his September “60 Minutes” appearance that the U.S. should avoid deepening its involvement in Syria, instead allowing Russia to take a leading role in combating the radical Islamist group that has called for attacks on the U.S.
    “Russia wants to get rid of ISIS. We want to get rid of ISIS. Maybe let Russia do it. Let them get rid of ISIS. What the hell do we care?” Trump said, despite U.S. wariness of Russia’s presence in Syria, which is mainly aimed at bolstering the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad, who the Obama administration has called for to leave.”

    Can anyone believe that HRC would say this? I am all in favor of letting Putin destroy himself without too much or our help in Syria if in the process ISIS is degraded as they are inspiring terror in the US and not the Iranians.

    Trump is turning into Rainman….crazy and incomprehensible most of the time, but every now and then he counts the matches in the box unerringly.

    Also, Trump during the debate, “we wasted $4 or 5 trillion in Iraq and gained nothing. Can you imagine spending that money here in the USA, great things would have happened”….Thats pure Bernie baby. HRC would never utter that statement as she is more of a hawk than Trump.

    For the first time, I think Trump may beat her. Can you imagine him going off on her war record? Or on Bill getting a blow job in the oval office and disgracing the Presidency.

    “HIlllary may be the candidate, but do we really want her unhinged husband back in the White house getting his peter wet with other women’s juices as he asks for another 2 billion for the Clinton foundation in exchange for favors by the President?, I am not bought like she and her first dude.”

  26. CSK says:

    @the Q:

    About the ISIS thing…sure, Trump said that Russia should take care of it. But then he said we should “bomb the sh!t” out of ISIS. He also said last September that he loved “the Muslims.They’re great people.” Now he wants them evicted.

    Trump has no policy of any kind. He just says whatever the hell comes out of his mouth knowing that the saps who adore him don’t remember any of his utterances from one day to the next.

  27. DrDaveT says:

    @the Q:

    Trump is turning into Rainman….crazy and incomprehensible most of the time, but every now and then he counts the matches in the box unerringly.

    Just like the Magic 8 Ball ™.

    You do see the resemblance, right? It’s a very close analogy, at all levels.

  28. Slugger says:

    Loyal Americans do not want tips on our election from any durn foreigners. Expect for Bibi Netanyahu, of course.

  29. Paul Hooson says:

    Bookends…Like the old PATTY DUKE SHOW THEME, “They look alike, they think alike, they’re two of a kind…”.

  30. MarkedMan says:

    @CSK:

    I really, really hope that Trump does not try to out-macho Putin by taking a shirtless horseback ride through Central Park. That image I do not wish to view.

    What about wrestling a bear? I want to see a shirtless Donald Trump wrestling a bear.

  31. C. Clavin says:

    @the Q:

    Trump is turning into Rainman….crazy and incomprehensible most of the time, but every now and then he counts the matches in the box unerringly.

    Yes…credit where credit is due…Trump has recognized the folly of Republican Foreign Policy…but the ability to see reality is a low bar for anyone but members of the GOP.

  32. JWh says:

    You missed an even bigger story.

    When did Putin appear on CSI: Miami?

  33. MarkedMan says:

    Let’s not give too much credit to Trump for occasionally being right. After all, he talks an awful lot. If even the worlds biggest nut job stands on a roof and pisses down onto the crowded sidewalk below they will occasionally hit someone who deserves it.

  34. JohnMcC says:

    It is not totally off-topic to mention that there was a claim by — I think — Krushchev that the Soviets helped elect JFK. There’s of course quite a bit of counter-argument. I couldn’t find the magic phrase that would cue the elves of Google to unlock that little memory.

    In general, Americans probably have almost no idea how our politics are watched from other countries. I certainly don’t.

  35. grumpy realist says:

    But The Donald is perfectly happy with Putin’s getting rid of his journalistic opposition.

    I guess, if you’re a journalist, you’re not a human in Trump’s world.

  36. al-Ameda says:

    @cd6:

    Obviously this is just strength recognizing strength. Democracy or despotism aside, smart people (like me) want to be led by strong, victorious men like Putin and Trump.

    Yes, of course we remember George W Bush’s bro-mance with Vladimir Putin too.

    Remember too, when the Republican Congress denied Obama the authority to launch strikes against encampments in Syria,, while at the same time complaining that Putin was seemingly accruing too much power in the region?

    How did that work out for the Putin-worshipping Republican caucus?

  37. Pch101 says:

    @al-Ameda:

    The GOP view of Putin varies based upon whether they perceive that they can use his actions as an excuse to trash Obama. It seems to have little to do with Putin himself.

    The whole world revolves around Obama, apparently. They keep running against him, even though I’m reasonably sure that the 22nd amendment hasn’t been repealed.

  38. Mikey says:

    @grumpy realist: I’m not sure Trump thinks about anything he says before it escapes his mouth.

    If he weren’t already human, he might fail the Turing test.

  39. al-Ameda says:

    @Pch101:

    The GOP view of Putin varies based upon whether they perceive that they can use his actions as an excuse to trash Obama. It seems to have little to do with Putin himself.

    You’re right.
    However, I couldn’t resist the urge to needle
    the anti-Obama obsessed Republican crew.