On Friday, at a press conference alongside British Prime Minister Theresa May, President Trump announced he would soon “firmly” press President Vladimir Putin over whether Moscow interfered with the 2016 American election.
Trump is set to meet with Putin Monday.
Russia has previously denied electoral meddling, and Trump didn’t say he expects a revelation. Nevertheless, he promised to “absolutely firmly ask the question.”
“I will absolutely bring that up. I don’t think you’ll have any ‘Gee, I did it, I did it, you got me.’ There won’t be a Perry Mason here. But you never know what happens, right?”
Speaking of that, I encourage all of you to check out Perry Mason if you’ve not done so already. It’s a terrifically written show and an enlightening glimpse into 50’s and 60’s America. Raymond Burr does a tremendous job, and I personally prefer it to his other TV hit, the 70’s crime drama Ironside. Although, props to CBS for giving us a main character in a wheelchair with that 8-season Emmy magnet.
Related to drama and crime, U.S. intelligence determined in 2017 that Russia did indeed attempt influence over the presidential election, specifically with the goal of damaging Hillary Clinton.
In November, Trump found himself in Putin’s presence at the Vietnam-hosted Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Economic Leaders’ Meeting. After that assembly, Trump stated that he believed Putin’s denial of electoral interference.
At the same time, however, he didn’t agree with him:
“I believe [Putin] believes [there was no election interference]. I believe that he feels that he and Russia did not meddle in the election. As to whether I believe it or not, I’m with our agencies, especially as currently constituted, with their leadership.”
And now, Trump is ready to ask again.
“Every time he sees me he says, ‘I didn’t do that,’ the President explained in November. “And I really believe that when he tells me that, he means it.”
It’s doubtful Putin’s answer will be any different next week, and the idea of one world leader asking another, “Did you do spy stuff to us?” seems fairly ridiculous. But I like that we have someone at the helm who will put it to you straight if he wants to know something. Just as Trump took political discourse to a conversational level in the 2016 debates, he’s now doing the same internationally — with G-7 (see my piece on that assembly here and here), with NATO (which I cover here), and with Vladimir Putin. Not only is Trump the Artist of the Deal; he’s the artist of the Deal With It.
What do you think about Trump’s questioning of Putin? Is it admirable, annoying, or idiotic? Also, any Perry Mason or Ironside testimonials? Let me know in the Comments section below.
For something completely different, here are my thoughts on political correctness and the Right’s contribution to it.
Or how about my piece on Colin Kaepernick’s subpoena of the President of the United States?
And here’s my coverage of the terminal Miss America pageant.
Find all my RedState work here.