Donald Trump’s Campaign Stands By Embrace of Putin

The signals of preference for the leadership of an adversary over that of the president came despite criticism from Democrats and discomfort among Republicans.

Comments: 259

  1. That Trump is a classic authoritarian and supports leaders of that stripe is not surprising.

    That Trump is making vague insinuations about classified briefings is entirely concerning. It's clearly not enough for the media to begin challenging his lies. The problem is becoming far bigger than that. Trump is as great a national security threat as we've ever faced.

  2. The news media has been bought and sold by the trump campaign.
    Why else would the news media allow trump to get away with what treasonous trash talk whether it be about McCain not being a war hero, to belittling the Kahn Gold star family mother, to saying his 2nd amendment people “By the way, if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do folks,” he then added., “Though the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know.” Mocking a handicapped reporter, and now praising Putin over Obama?
    We know he lead the birther movement, but this is too far.
    Well I guess not the news media is letting him get a way with this too. After all Clinton's emails are more important.

  3. She is trying to deflect the fact that foreign powers have dirt on her through hacking her home brew server. She is compromised and in a position to be blackmailed if elected president.

    I cant believe she had so many laptops and cellphones smashed with hammers like she was Gus Fring from Breaking Bad. The Clinton Foundation is her Pollos Hermanos.

  4. Waiting for the chronically tone-dear Mr Trump to tweet: "Vote Trump: He's Putin's Choice!"

  5. Trump is in debt to the Russians. He will do what they tell him to do. On this basis alone, he is unacceptable as a preidential candidate. The GOP needs to dissociate themselves from Trump. Now.

  6. The DNC is scared of Putin. They fear taking any military action, since they drained Defense funds dry.

  7. Hahahahaha.
    They won't, they want their guy no matter how treasonous to win.
    Remember not too long ago the GOP picked Sarah Palin to be a heart beat away for an old man as president.

  8. Has the MSM done any investigation / calculation of the extent of Trump business dealings with Russia, particulary debt obligations?

  9. Can you just imagine -- imagine -- the apoplectic uproar if Hillary Clinton said even some of the things that come out of Trump's mouth?

    Is there anything Trump can say that would shock anyone to a point where he loses support?

    The guy can say anything, lie about anything and everything and make the most outrageous statements possible -- stuff that would be considered insane not long ago -- and he gets a complete pass from the public and the press.

    Hillary's so-called "lies" are like a kid throwing eggs at a house compared to Trump's Charles Manson-style statements.

    That this would happen in the America I live in is beyond belief.

  10. you have your roles reversed. it is Hil-liar-y that is spewing lies and falsehoods.
    she should be charged with obstruction for deleting those emails. and more.

  11. "That this would happen in the America I live in is beyond belief."
    But it is happening so what are you going to do about it? Like most elections, the voters that don't turn out decide the results. You need to encourage and actually help your friends, family and associates to get to the voting stations.

  12. Imagine if Obama or Bernie Sanders or anyone had said this. The GOP propaganda machine would be screaming for an investigation with ads showing the Soviet Union flags in the background. I remember when Max Cleland was smeared - with the triple amputee and Vietnam vet accused of being unpatriotic with Saddam Hussein shown over one shoulder and Osama bin Laden over the other. In the meantime, his Republican opponent who avoided Vietnam due to a trick knee or something had ads showing himself surrounded by military brass.

  13. Can someone explain to me please why Trump's remarks--asking the Russians to hack into Clinton's email, and threatening her life by encouraging NRA supporters to shoot her, are not sufficient to indict him for treason?

  14. Answer, because the media is complacent and only wants to report on stories that get paid advertising.
    Reporting on a story about Trump and Putin, or Trump and the NRA are one sided. The trump campaign is not held accountable by the media.
    Just look at how no one, NO ONE in the media EVERY challenges trump or his surrogates when they spew lies about thing people already know to be lies.
    We are sick of the media.

  15. If Trump were already President, calling for Russia to steal his political opponent's emails, openly admiring the Russian Dictator, and suggesting the US withdraws from its NATO responsibilities, he would be facing impeachment.

  16. "Can someone explain to me please why Trump's remarks--asking the Russians to hack into Clinton's email, and threatening her life by encouraging NRA supporters to shoot her, are not sufficient to indict him for treason?"

    Ok: treason is defined in the Constitution, Article III, Section 3, as "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort."

    The word is thrown around quite a bit, by both sides unfortunately.

  17. How cowardly is the republican leadership? All they want is to win elections, line their pockets, and don't care one iota for this country. Along as one of "theirs" gets elected they are on the gravy train. Trump and Putin dictators forever and Americans are backing this? Treason.

  18. John, you've used "Republican" and "leadership" in the same sentence - an obvious error.

  19. Does Donald Trump's racism carry more weight with some Americans than his embrace of this vile dictator? To borrow a quote from the movie, "Ghost": "America, you in danger, girl!"

  20. Is Trump courting Russian hacking of the US election in Trump's favor? Is that what's behind this otherwise puzzling praise?

  21. Do you realize that you are a reckless propaganda tool that appears quite desperate?

  22. You do realize that if any Democrat would say what Trump has said many Republicans would be calling it treason seeking to impeach--but now that the Republican party has lost its mind Trump can say any treasonous thing and his cultists will fawn all over him.

  23. The first thing the US Congress should do, now that they are back in session, is charge Donald Trump with treason.

  24. Trump will be POTUS in 2016. He will make sure Hil-liar-y goes to jail for her email and server secret violations.

  25. Or at least tried under the Sedition Acts.

  26. tiffiny, when Trump makes himself POTUS-for-Life, like Putin, he can imprison anyone he wants, for any reason, just like Putin. Even you, should you ever become disenchanted with his gloriousness.

    Buyer, beware!

  27. The campaign of Trump has crossed many boundaries and along with the Republican Party has severely damaged our democratic process. The Republicans have made it clear that they will only support a president of their own party. It shows in the words and actions of Trump and the GOP in general that they feel that President Obama is not the President of the USA, but rather he’s a Democratic President that doesn’t deserve the support of the Republican Party. Apparently they don’t seem to care that when they trash our President they are also trashing the rest of the country.

    Trump has more praise for the dictator of our longtime adversary that in the past would have been considered treason. Trump says Putin is a strong leader, that he may be, but so was Hitler. Trump is a divisive demagogue and the Republican Party is just as responsible for Trump’s actions as he. Down ticket Republicans are running on the platform of obstructionism on the chance that Hillary will win telling their backers that they need to be in Congress to stop Hillary’s agendas. Is that what we have to look forward to? Another 4 years of Republican obstructionism?

    What happened to our country that both parties cannot work together after an election to forward the good of the country first? It’s time we make it very clear that no matter who is President that the good of this country comes first and the party second.

  28. What happened? The Alt Right took over the Republican party.

  29. Speaking of making assertions "vaguely, unverifiably and without evidence," who said that Clinton's performance in the forum was "uneven," let alone so much so that she would be "happy" to 'pivot' from it?

    The author of this article makes absolutely no effort to make the case for the characterization he assumes to be true. Trump much?

  30. Vladimir Putin is 'popular' in Russia because political opposition and dissent are systematically aborted at birth by Kremlin and oligarchic mafia forces.

    Then the Kremlin party line is systematically reinforced by Kremlin-sponsored TV nationwide in Russia --- Fox News Russian style and writ larger.

    As the cherry on the cake, Russia is a world leader in producing dead journalists who report the truth, thereby enhancing Kremlin propaganda and authoritarianism.

    The fact that Trump admires the Russian mafia boss and his management style tells you he wants to do for America what Putin has done for Russia - make the country safe for tyranny and oligarchs.

    Vladimir Putin has a billion dollar palace on the Black Sea built with swindled dollars and Russian fraud that matches Trump's Tower of Tales perfectly.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Putin%27s_Palace

    Czar Trump 2016

  31. Having recently returned from a four-year stint in Moscow, I have a perspective on Putin that differs from Trump's. Russian citizens now fearfully await enactment of Putin's anti-terrorist law that not only sends religious freedom into the dark ages, but will also monitor their personal emails, texts, and calls. Pensioners live in poverty and supplement incomes by selling sauerkraut, used books, whatever, on the street. Many food items are unavailable or at a cost out of range for many because Putin prefers sanctions rather to stop aggression in Ukraine; after all, the wealth he accrued in a similar fashion as Yanukovych, deposed Ukrainian president, allows him free access to all Western goods and more. Political dissidents are jailed in Russia or lose their lives for disagreeing with Czar Putin. In private, Russians lament the tyranny of their president, but believe that in public it is unsafe to do anything other than voice support, and they constantly look over their shoulders to see if Big Brother is watching. Russians suffer economically and emotionally, and Putin is solely to blame. Putin and his oligarchs skim wealth from their beautiful country and use it to enrich themselves, not the people. Is this the leader that Trump adulates? Does Trump aspire to a Czar-ish presidency? Unfortunately, the average Trump supporter doesn't understand the seriousness of Trump's bromance with one of the world's most despicable leaders.

  32. Maybe President Trump will kill, uh, silence, politicians and news reporters he doesn't like, too.

  33. I was doing business in Russia in the early 90's and saw first hand how poorly the poor were doing and i gather that conditions have not improved. One very interesting item was that unusable light bulb were available on the street at a price many times the multiple of new bulbs. New bulbs were generally unavailable but if one had a burnt out bulb, one could replace a usable bulb at your place of work and take it home.

  34. And Josef Stalin was "stronger" than Mahatma Gandhi! It is not surprising that Mr Trump is a fan of another dangerous narcissist. What is surprising is the latitude our gutless media continue to give this blowhard. When do interviewers and journalists stop whining about him and start confronting him with his own lies. In Russia this isn't possible, that's why Putin can be so "successful". I'm sure Mr Trump would have no hesitation in treating his opponents with similar brutality as Mr Putin does, if our electorate is stupid enough to elect him.

  35. He has already said that he wants to loosen the libel laws, which is an attack on the FIRST amendment

  36. PBS's DR show this morning was talking about Lauer's performance with Trump and the host ask the other journalist if they though they could do a better job raise their hand, none did. Sad

  37. If such an embrace is not a warning of Trump's future authoritarian recklessness with Putin as his perhaps mirror, even his supporters are more obtuse than I thought.

    No, it's what they want. A landscape of fire and fear.

  38. Clinton's game plan, as dictated by her elite puppet masters, seems to be forcing a confrontation with Russia. Trump, if nothing else, sees the risk in such a tactic. This is not Iraq. Russia really does have nukes and the means of delivery. Even the 1% will get zapped should someone make a mistake.

  39. "Seems to?" Can you point this evidence? I also am amazed at how one can criticize the current administration for being weak, and then at the same time criticize them because they are standing up to Russian aggressions and attacks on our country. Cognitive dissonance, anyone's?

  40. Joseph, of course Russia has nukes. They also know we have them. So what's your point? Putin's not suicidal. He won't start a nuclear war with Clinton, but he might manipulate Trump into handing over eastern Europe and the Middle East without a shot fired. Putin, like Trump, knows an easy mark when he sees one.

  41. No, Trump does not see the risk in such a tactic -- he's friendly with Russia for his own reasons.

    Like most Trumpsters, you seem to think the only choices are war with Russia and appeasement. Why?

  42. Hopefully even the undereducated white males who form the bulk of Trump's support base see that he is a dangerous wingnut for supporting a strongman de facto dictator who has nothing but contempt for international law (which is not to say that the US's hands are squeaky-clean) -- and, indeed, for the United States. Will they have the smarts to drop him like a red-hot potato? Probably not, but one can always hope... Time will tell.

  43. Considering what Putin does to his opposition, I suggest that Trump and Pence be a bit more cautious in wishing that Obama emulate him.

  44. Trump embraces Putin's "firm grip on Russia." Those are Trump's words. I never thought I would see the day of a Republican embracing an autocratic leader of the old Soviet Union. Putin might have publicly ditched communism and put the Orthodox cross around his neck, but he didn't discard the harsh hand that leaders starting with Lenin held on their people. Now even Snowden recognizes that Putin is not a friend of freedom and liberty.

    How could American people support such a leader like Trump? Do they really feel that someone who promises to tear down the American fabric and replace it with something that he refuses to even explain bring a bright future to the next generation? Trump has said many ridiculous things since the spotlight has been directed to him but this is pure insanity.

  45. I present to you Trump's exact response to the question: "what is your plan for ISIS?"

    "When I do come up with a plan that I like and that perhaps agrees with mine or maybe doesn't. I may love what the generals come back with. I have a plan but... But I want to be, I don't want to... Look I have a very substantial chance of winning, to make America great again. We're going to make America great again. I have a substantial chance of winning. If I win I don't want to broadcast to the enemy exactly what my plan is. Let me tell you - if I like maybe a combination of my plan and the generals' plan... Or the generals' plan. If I like their plan Matt, I'm not going to call you up and say 'Matt, we have a great plan'."

    America, please wake up...

  46. Holy cow... He came off as rambling at the forum. But looking at that response on the written page is just devastating.

  47. Casey Stengel and Yogi Berra rolled into one!!!

  48. Yes, but Hillary didn't smile enough. Plus as the NYT's Patrick Healy explained in his "analysis" of the event, she looked "stilted" at the start, and, in terms of "body language" was not as "relaxed" as Trump was, though she did make more frequent eye contact. (See? That's balanced reporting at its finest!)

  49. The Times. I remember when that used to mean something, when journalists all over the world sought to work there. What a shame.

  50. I agree with Mr. Trump. Putin's approval rate is 82% and what is approval rate of our president?

  51. How on earth is Vladimir Putin's domestic approval rating relevant? What is his approval rating in the United States and among US allies?

  52. And this is how determine a good leader? Hitler's was also that high, for awhile. It did not end up so well for him or Germany

  53. Putin probably IS a stronger leader than Obama. But that does NOT mean he is a better leader, much less one that we want our next president to emulate.

  54. Dear Mr. Pence: It is inarguable that Benito Mussolini was a stronger leader in Italy than Franklin D. Roosevelt was in the United States.

    That's the difference between an oppressive dictatorship and a democratic republic.

    But you knew that already, didn't you, Mr. Pence? Some of us are concerned that your running mate doesn't.

  55. Trump will be a great world leader because he can get along with other world leaders like Putin. We should want other world leaders to think our President is brilliant. Why do we need to be enemies with Russia. The Cold War is over. Reagan did his job,; now let Trump do what is necessary to maintain peace. We don;t need some shrill hag antagonizing people that were our allies in World War II.

  56. Whenever I see a Trump supporter saying that Hillary is a hag--it reminds me what this is really about in the minds of many--it is called misogyny. Let's not forget that.

  57. This is a joke, right?

  58. Perhaps if the "shrill hag" wins, you will apply for citizenship in Russia? I'll buy your plane ticket and see you off.

  59. I ask of you, after listening to Donald Trump Jr. and Donald Trump, Presidential candidate, what are the Russians holding over Trump Jr. and Donald? why are they so desperate to turn this country over to Putin? that is obviously the plan, what are they afraid of? what are they to gain?
    Of course, we will not know since Trump refuses to reveal his Taxes. He is allowed to get away with it. I feel sorry for Mike Pence.

  60. Don't feel sorry for Mike pence, he's as corrupt as Trump but only hides behind the Bible and pretends to be "holy thou". That's being a republican, get behind the bible and you win.

  61. Pence deserves no sympathy. Shame on him for echoing Trumps ignorance. Trump is unable to get backing from US banks-he's probably heavily indebt to Russia and other countries with competing interests.

  62. Putin has socked away a purported $10 billion by stealing from the Russian people.

    Reporters who criticize Putin die not so mysterious deaths.

    Oligarchs who criticize Putin suddenly find themselves investigated for tax fraud or other Trumped up crimes against the state and their fortunes expropriated.

    The Russian Federation is a democracy in name only, because it lacks an independent multiple party system.

    There is a long list of dead opponents of Putin in politics, the media, the armed services, and in business.

    It is a stunning admission to hear both Donald Trump and Mike Pence cite poll numbers as proof of Putin's effectiveness and strength as a leader while ignoring the despot's corruption.

    They are either wholly naive or completely corrupt - both disqualifying qualifications for office.

  63. "Putin has socked away a purported $10 billion by stealing from the Russian people."

    Now that's very possible. I have a Russian friend who told me pretty much the same thing, I got lost on the details but apparently, according to this person, Putin either owns or gets a cut from one of the energy companies. Huge bucks. The guy had lived in Russia many years, he knew what was going on.

    However: when we talk about the president of a country being "a leader," we're not talking about any of that. We're talking about how he behaves -- how he represents his country's interests -- on the world stage. Obama/NATO have by far the stronger hand, but Putin has played them brilliantly, and you don't have to be a commie to say that.

    Obama goes around the world, the nonsense he spews; it is jaw-dropping. Everywhere.

    Obama: Countries near Russia have a deep concern and suspicion of this kind of meddling. (Russia's meddling.)

    Putin: You'd have to be insane to think Russia's going to attack NATO.

    Which leader is giving it straight?

  64. Explain that to Trump's supporters, who probably can't find Russia on a map, much less understand the kleptocracy he created. Trump: the perfect candidate for fools.

  65. Abie, since when has the definition of presidential leadership been limited to behavior on the world stage?

    And are you saying that you approve of the unlawful invasion of Ukraine and annexation of Crimea? The assassination of dissidents on foreign soil? Those are examples of Putin's behavior on the world stage.

  66. It is remarkable that each week The Donald becomes even more bizarre. He is like a really bad TV soap, where the only way to keep an audience is to be more outrageous with each week. It is hard to see how he sustain this insanity for another 8 weeks, but it was hard to see how he would get this far with such hopeless material and such bad stylists.

  67. Last night my husband and I reviewed the transcript of Lauer's special in an argument about whether Trump had actually said he preferred Putin's leadership to Obama's. He did not. He said Putin was more popular in his country and separately he said Obama was not a strong leader. I lost the argument.. Today I wake up to Pence's quote reinforcing the idea. and Trump's refusal to walk back his comments , and it looks like I win. I wish I hadn't. This is scary stuff. He's a scary guy..

  68. Those days you get the feeling Trump is only running to push Obama's buttons are the same ones you find yourself, if only momentarily and to your considerable shame, regretting the fact that Obama isn't just a little bit more like Putin.

  69. Yeah, I often secretly wish my calm, steady and quietly strong President were more like a murderous dictator bent upon world domination.

  70. marylouisemarkle -- sarcasm is wasted on these people, they don't get it.

  71. A charlatan has become part of American history.

    Next generations will NEVER forgive the GOP for nominating/supporting this con artist!

    Vote Hillary!!

  72. So, media, let's raise the bar so high for Trump that he cannot reach it. Harp on him every day like you did on Hillary. Juxtapose footage of Mr. Putin's reign of terror over Russian citizens and journalists, with Mr. Trump's ongoing and outrageous praise. And, be sure to focus on the hacking invitation, which is how Mr. Trump would like to "rig" this election.

    And one more thing, Secretary Clinton's "uneven performance" at the debate is a perception generated by Mr. Trump, the Republicans, and now you, yet again. That she "delighted at the chance to change the subject" is to be sure, a well earned perk.

  73. Thank you for pointing out the article's aside that Sec. Clinton had an "uneven" performance in the debate, without any explanation or evidence. She answered all questions articulately and displayed outstanding grasp of policy and reality. There was nothing at all "uneven" in her performance, yet the Times throws that characterization in, one more time portraying an unwarrantedly negative picture of her. It is past time to end this bias and focus on the danger presented by Mr. Trump.

  74. The media is holding Trump to a different standard. Off the wall, incoherent, bigoted or unpatriotic comments from Trump and his surrogates are not being vigorously challenged, probably based on the premise that Trump is an "outsider", and not a career politician.
    This double standard will only confuse the electorate and will enable an unfit and narcissistic individual his continued viability as a presidential candidate. It is time for responsible journalists to stop lies and demagoguery in its tracks before further damage is done to our body politic.

  75. Trump's disdain for anyone who would challenge him is well documented. Of course he would like to have the kind of authoritarian grip that Putin wields. Trump would very much like for enemies - be they real or imagined - to be "dealt with" in a Putin like manner.

    Chew on that before you vote for him. Please.

  76. Oh, let's also ask Trump what he thinks of Kim Jong Un. I mean, put Trump's hair on him or vice-versa, and you have twins separated at birth.

  77. Trump is actually quite fortunate that President Obama does not choose to express strength in the same ways that Putin does - otherwise he might find something very nasty in his tea one day.

  78. The scariest thing about Donald Trump's embrace of Putin -- his apparent man-crush on the Russian leader -- is that it all stems from Putin flattering him.
    Putin evidently said he was 'bright', which Trump interpreted as 'brilliant', in the brainy sort of way. But Russian translators have said the word Putin used actually meant bright as in 'bright and shiny' or 'colorful character'.
    The fact remains that Trump's ego is so bloated, that he has now shown all the world one only has to flatter him and he'll be eating out of one's hand -- anyone's hand.

  79. That says a lot about the character of Donald Trump. Anyone who criticizes Putin can be killed, disappear or lucky if only ostracized. Even former Soviet leader, Gorbachev, sees through Putin.

    "The former Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev described Russia on Monday as an imitation of democracy and accused its current leaders of contempt for voters in his harshest criticism of the government. Mr. Gorbachev, left, criticized Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin and his protégé, President Dmitri A. Medvedev, for saying that they would decide who should run for president next year. He called the statements a show of “incredible conceit” and disrespect for voters. “It’s not Putin’s business,” he said. “It must be decided by the nation in the elections, by those who would cast ballots. Can’t other people also run?”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/22/world/europe/22briefs-Russia.html

  80. So, this is the Presidential candidate who was sworn to secrecy as to what he learned in the top secret CIA briefings who then turned around and went public with what is undoubtedly a lie -- that CIA briefers told him they were angry that Obama didn't do something they suggested. But let's supposed they DID tell him that.
    He has now leaked a national secret to Putin and the rest of the world. He should be cut off from all future briefings immediately.
    Personally?...
    Trump's a liar. We all know that. So he made up this story to taint our current President and, by implication, Hillary, knowing all along, no one would be able to challenge his lies BECAUSE THEY MIGHT BE NATIONAL SECRETS.
    This guy is slime.
    Let's make this a first for a presidential election:
    IMPEACH TRUMP BEFORE THE ELECTION EVEN OCCURRS.

  81. I wonder how the flag waving, real American patriots supporting Trump rationalize this in their heads.

  82. But they do. They really do.

    They are literally blinded by their hatred of Ms. Clinton.

  83. That people can tolerate, let alone condone, any American presidential candidate validating the brutal practices of an authoritarian dictator are simply numbing, and quite frankly, tragic. This election is astounding, and speaks volumes about the plight we face in terms of our social and moral fabric as a nation. I beg of my fellow citizens reject the horrible, idiotic, unpatriotic and astoundingly ignorant rants of Trump and his cronies. Don't listen, shut the door, and ignore him. God willing, he will slink away like the vermin he is once this hideous election is over.

  84. Without the name calling and insults. The Clinton Foundation (and thus Hillarys Campaign) has accepted more money from more dictatorships than any one. Countries that execute gays, stone women to death, and rape young boys. No one has said to "embrace" Putins tactics. What has been said is that in the real world what we have here in America is an effeminate, weak, and listless leader that can not and will not stand up to aggression. Hillary on the other hand has already been bought and paid for by numerous foreign powers. Trump understands REALPOLITIK and will deal with p[powerful foreign leaders from a position of US strength, not weakness.

  85. The Clinton Foundation is actually completely separate from Hillary's campaign funds, but please don't facts bother you, Mosin. And if by "effeminate," you mean knowledgeable, hard-working, self-disciplined and strategic, then Obama does indeed embody the best qualities of women.

    https://www.clintonfoundation.org/about/annual-financial-reports

  86. it seems that it is time for Mr. Trump to release his tax returns so that we can see how much influence his loans from Russian banks have on his policy positions.

  87. Much as Idislike Trump, he clearly knows more about diplomacy and avoiding war than the NYT mentor, Hillary. He's a negotiator. As she proved with her failed wars in the regime change period getting her "foreign experience" with Libya, Syria, Egypt, and the Ukraine, her approach to diplomacy is chose your target and strike first - then talk.

    The only problem is that there's nobody left to talk to.

    The proof of Hillary's diplomatic brilliance is in eating the pudding, which we're doing now in the above countries with our billions and their blood.

    If you don't know your enemy he'll defeat you. Did she know these "enemies"? Did her leaders at the CIA?

    At least Trump recognizes a basic truth of diplomatic negotiation: flatter the opposition, be friends with them, wear the white hat, because the black one is always available and the opposite is not necessarily true.

    Hillary's belligerence is profoundly wrong headed and she started it with the CIA and her fellow neocon, Nuland. Maybe she just can't stand bare male chests, but that is her personal limitation, not America's and certainly not worth the risk of a nuclear war.

    Since she rigged her nomination, I've no one intelligent left to vote for except Stein. Perhaps Hillary's Parkinson's will take her out of the race and her Democrat machine will have to put up Clapper or Brennan.

    Meanwhile, Trump is by far a better bet for peace than the Clinton clan.

  88. "Since she rigged her nomination, I've no one intelligent left to vote for except Stein."

    Sad and twisted, as only a Bernie-or-Buster
    can do.

  89. Please, please, please educate yourself about life in contemporary Russia and what it would mean if Putin had any influence at all over the United States. Please.

  90. Pure rubbish!
    This comment provides a perfect example of just how low the Trump forces are willing to stoop.
    "Hillary's Parkinson's" indeed. Shameful.

  91. Trump praising a dirty thug over our president and Clinton lying for the umpteenth time about her "pay to play" private server set-up while secy of state. I doesn't get any uglier.

  92. Hillary isn't lying about anything. But I understand your ignorance because the NY Times reporting has been appalling on that.

    No doubt you were just as positive that Saddam Hussein had WMD because the NY Times made it very clear in their reporting that was true. When the NY Times says something, it has weight.

    Which is why the reporters and editors are entirely at fault for your ignorance. Just like they were when you were 100% certain that a war with Iraq would save the US from immediate nuclear annihilation.

  93. Life in Russia under Putin is relatively grim. Alcoholism is pervasive. Life expectancy is substantially below the United States. Per capita GDP is $14,600 per year compared to over $53,000 in the United States. Political corruption abounds. Freedom of expression is vastly curtailed. Putin's political opponents often end up murdered or imprisoned. It's widely reported that Mr. Putin, a career midlevel KGB agent with a current salary equal to about $56,000 USD per annum, is unofficially the wealthiest person in the world ($200 billion) due to systematic theft of state assets (perhaps this is what gets Trump excited?).

    So what exactly does Trump admire and why does he want to emulate it here?

  94. He wants to emulate exactly what you described. Being President is about enriching himself.

  95. It is absolutely frightening that so many of Mr. Trump's ill-informed acolytes do not realize what they are supporting. What is going on in this country--and will we collectively wake up in time to ensure that we don't slip into fascism? The media and our saner politicians have got to take a stand, and pronto. There is too much at stake to pretend that this is some "out there" reality show. The rabble are begging for fascism, not realizing that they, too, will suffer.

  96. Its the $200 billion that he admires.

  97. "Trump Stands By Embrace of Putin Despite Criticism."

    Well, of course he does, and the more the criticism, the more he likes it.

    He's of no mind to "debate" us on this (or anything else, for that matter), just milk the controversey for all it's worth.

    Why play *his* game?

    For the remainer of the campaign, no matter what his provocation, this reader will just yawn, and say, "Sure, Donnie, whatever."

  98. It is obvious that Trump and Pence believe that the US should morph into a totalitarian dictatorship based on Putin's control of Russia. So is this another sick joke? No, it's what they really intend to do, especially if they have a GOP majority!

  99. An effective national leader improves the lives of the country's population. Obama wins hands down, drop the Mic. Astonishing that the Republican party has become the party sympathetic to Communism! If this is in fact not the case, Republican party members especially leaders must stand up and publicly do more than express "discomfort" - they must disavow Trump and and what he stands for clearly and unequivocally.

  100. Are you listening, Paul Ryan??? "J" of Philadelphia is speaking to you!

  101. If Clinton had made the same statements as Trump, Limbaugh and Hannity would be flying off the handle so much that they'd each get a stroke.

  102. And the Left silent, as with Clinton's cozy admiring affair with ex-KKK Byrd-D.

  103. Robert Byrd died in 2010, and he disavowed the KKK many years before that.. Why is he relevant at all? Donald Trump is the person in this election cycle who is supported by ALL white supremacist groups.

  104. I cry for an educational system which would leave 40% of America bereft of the historical background to understand the distance between Putin, Trump and the ideals of the US presidency.

  105. I agree. I'm an ashamed retired school teacher. My focus on critical thinking did not work out so well. And that takes me back to the fact that economic and social levels are the greatest indicators of academic success. But the question remains; do critical thinking skills and academic success have anything to do with each other? Do most people need to be taught when to apply critical thinking skills. Do they need to hear it in their daily lives, at home during dinner conversations. If they need to apply these skills throughout their day so that by the time they reach adulthood it's part of their thinking style then the middle and lower economic children in our country don't have that opportunity because both parents work. At school the large classrooms make dialogue difficult. Teachers aren't prepared to lead children through the rigors of critical thought.

  106. Since Obama has been President, the Presidency has been destroyed. It is no longer the office our founders designed.

  107. Judyw, actually it's Congress got destroyed -- by Republicans who would rather score partisan points and wealthy donors than act for the common good. You know, controversial stuff like saving babies from Zika birth defects or from lead in their drinking water. Those things fall outside the primary Republican mission of pleasing big right-wing donors. Governing for the people after winning? What's the point? There's no money in it.

  108. Trump's narcissism so far surpasses that of the normal run of the mill political candidate that he is unable to make a reasonable judgment about the leader of one of the world's least democratic most authoritarian nations. International policy is not a real estate negotiation. No amount of "wouldn't it be nice" is going to stop Putin from pursuing his own goals and they don't overlap with ours. Trump is ignorant about history as well as politics in ways that are seriously dangerous to this nation. Those who support him and trust him more than his opponent need to take a second and third look at how people who trusted him in his business ventures have faired. In common parlance we'd say "they lost their shirts." In an international arena trusting DT could cost the nation a whole lot lot more. Russians don't call people like DT "useful idiots" for nothing.

  109. Mr. Trump s a traitor, an authoritarian, incapable of circumspection, incapable of self-control, and he has ugly plastered hair. He is the Hugo Chavez of American politics. He is scandalous when he talks, and the shameless American media eats it up. In spite of his calamitous shortcomings, he still has the support of the closet racists in this country. Alas, the perils of democracy when the populace does not believe in the principles of its own constitution.

  110. One of Trump’s more revealing assertions in this regard is that Putin is to be admired because he is so popular in Russia. Anyone who equates popularity with leadership is not fit to lead.

  111. Putin's Russia has a very effective method of population control. Those who don't agree with the government's path disappear. That's why Putin enjoys a 82% approval rating (according to Trump). Anyone beyond the allowed 18% find themselves in Siberia without shelter and winter clothing.

  112. Maybe the recent polls that show Trump ahead were conducted by Russian pollsters.

  113. Increasingly, it's clear that Trump's narcissistic personality disorder is at the root of his most outrageous statements. The fact that Putin complimented him is paramount. Praise from any source, regardless of its merit, satiates his need for approval. In his solipsistic world, what matters most is preserving the illusion that it's all about Donald.

  114. I agree that Trump is exhibiting symptoms of a server mental disorder, but that doesn't begin to explain what is wrong with those who support him.

  115. I wonder what it will take for the Trump people out there to back away from this clown.

  116. Nothing. When things don't turn our right they just stomp there feet and complain about things not going their way.

    Fortunately it will end with the rigged election.

    Every member of the G.O.P. will dump Trump and Trump will go running loudly while crying foul.

    Good people who are pretending to support Trump/toe the party line like Paul Ryan is will denounce Trump as fast as the G.O.P distances itself from Trump and prepares for the regroup.

    It's whole new era for the G.O.P. It just can't start yet until Trump is dumped. They can't do it now. Have to wait until November.

    I'm sure they all know that's what's going to happen and is being worked on.

    Especially Paul Ryan. And many others. I'd say countless others but they've already distanced themselves from their candidate waiting for him to exit stage left.

    It's just a timing thing. i.e. November.

  117. Maybe Trump's supporters are as demented and treasonous as the candidate himself; maybe more so.

  118. Nothing. There is nothing Trump can say or do that will diminish his support. A commentator this morning mentioned that a reader told him (in response to an article discussing Trumps many flaws), he understood Trump was ignorant, horrible for the country and would be ruinous, but would vote for him-just to stick it in the commentators eye. There are states in this union who's greater population has this very mind set. It is disheartening and terrifying.

  119. Donald Trump's supporters don't appear to be listening to the content of his remarks; they only hear bravado. His is the outspoken, even-if-inaccurate voice they wish they had. Let's hope substance prevails in November.

  120. I must agree that Vladimir Putin is a 'stronger' leader than Obama, but the principles of Democracy require a strength through consensus and free speech rather than strength through political manipulation, intimidation and one man rule. A strong leader in the truest sense must be popular because he or she is admired for wisdom, integrity, accomplishment and a reflection of the will of the people. As is plain to see, they are few and far between.

  121. I have to say (as I've said more than once in comments to the Times), that I am always delighted at dewy-eyed Paul Ryan's craven attempt at statesmanship. And horrified that the Ryans and the Rubios of the Republican party are so desperate to keep their jobs (where their primary purpose seems to do absolutely nothing in service to the American people) at the expense of the country's well-being. Ryan is "shocked, shocked, I tell you" by Trump on a daily basis, and yet wouldn't say "Look, people, we screwed this one up. I know he's "our" candidate, but don't vote for this narcissistic maniac. And we'll get back to you in 2020." if his life depended on it (which it might!) Career first, Paul Ryan! America thanks you for your service.

  122. Vladimir Putin has no respect for democracy. He's a thug. He operates as though the country is still communist and he's still in the KGB. That appeals to Donald Trump, the Republican candidate for president. And, apparently, his running mate. Gee, if Trump is elected, I wonder how he will operate. It's a mystery.

  123. Putin does not try to export his form of government. We run around all over the globe exporting our form of government through regime change and War.

  124. Ask Crimea and Ukraine about whether Putin exports his form of government...which appears to be an oligarchy made up of his friends.

  125. Trump is a bully, that is his appeal. His weakness causes him to subjugates himself to stronger bullys. Trump's campaign has a single issue, keeping illegals from reproducing and taking over our Country. We really just need laws that would make an illegal giving birth here a. crime, subject to immediate deportation.

  126. So let us not elect a bully to the presidency and thereby empower many other bullies.

  127. Tim, that would be a truly awesome way to raise the rate of abortion, abandonment and even infanticide, if that's your goal. It also sounds like a great idea to ferry busloads of women and children back over the border without due process, while the men stay in the U.S. and keep working.

    "...there is always a well-known solution to every human problem — neat, plausible, and wrong.”
    - H.L. Mencken

  128. Let's see...
    One of the candidates is easy to manipulate with praise due to rampart narcissism, is being helped by a crooked Russian and hacked emails, cannot admit a mistake and splits his time either lying or reversing himself and then denying that he did so.

    The other candidate spent 8 years in the White House during one of the strongest economic growth periods in recent time, was an effective Senator and served as Secretary of State actually meeting and negotiating with various heads of State.

    Tough choice this year.

  129. So, because Hillary spent 8 years sleeping (probably alone) in the White House that makes her qualified to be President? That an odd logic. I would prefer someone who has the strength and guts to deal one on one with Putin who is actually, despite all the liberal whining, a very strong leader. I trust Trump (and Putin) more then I would ever ever trust Clinton and over 50% of Americans feel the same way.

  130. No, she is qualified because as first lady in Arkansas she fought for and got improved access to education for all citizens. As first lady she championed universal healthcare and when the republican led Congress killed it, she was able to push for and get the SCHIP program through, which provided medical care to millions of children.

    Then, as Senator, she fought for benefits for 9/11 first responders, medical coverage for members of the National Guard and reserves, and increased survivor's benefits from those with family members killed in action.

    As Secretary of State she helped make the US much more respected throughout the world and in spite of the right's claim that she was too hawkish, used diplomacy to defuse a number os situations that could have easily led to US military intervention.

    She has a more than 30 year track record of helping others and a broad knowledge of government and the world.

    Trump has a track record of bankruptcy, lawsuits, business failures, and helping himself at the expense of others.

  131. "...was an effective Senator ..."

    Ha ha ha ha ha.

    The bullo-meter hit 11 with that one, Pat.

    Tell us: what she do?

  132. Let me see. At the convention, the Trump campaign pushes for a "soft" line on Putin's annexation of the Crimea. That campaign, at the time, was being run by an international operator, Paul Manafort, who has deep ties to Eastern Europe politics and the Russian Republic, His alleged role in the robbery of billions from Ukraine by a gang of criminal oligarchs, the leader of whom was a Manafort client, was reported one day in the press here, but has since slipped from view.

    Manafort is gone, but sidekick Boris Ephshteyn, a Russian-born former financial player in the oligarchy that is the Russian Republic, has become one of Trump's chief spokespeople, and he is not slow to offer positive views of Putin whenever given the chance.

    And Trump suggests that Putin has been a better leader than the US president. And he advocates a closer connection to Russia as a good way to solve international problems.

    And the Russians hacked the DNC and turned over embarrassing materials in the middle of the Democratic primary. Wikileaks suggests there is another dump of material embarrassing to the Dems soon to be released. Russia, in short, seems to be intervening in the election to help Trump.

    Please explain to me why the media refuse to connect the dots. Just another way in which they are cowed by Trump, afraid to do any in-depth investigation and reporting?

  133. Other news outlets have been connecting the dots. For some reason Times reporters haven't picked up the stories. There seems to be a disconnect between the editorial board, the op-ed writers and the news desks.

  134. I am listening now to Jack Kingston of Georgia (my former congressman) defending Trump's praise of Putin. What has happened to the GOP that it is now supporting a terrible Russian dictator?

  135. Add the interview Trump did with Larry King broadcast on Thursday night on Russian TV, a known propaganda outlet funded by the Kremlin, in which Trump thought it unlikely that the Russians hacked, but it possibly a Democratic Party rumor. This has not been reported in the NYT, but has been by the WSJ and Wash. Post.

  136. Trump, who has little actual knowledge of foreign affairs, and little inclination to learn, thinks being president of the world's most powerful democracy is like being the C.E.O. of a company. He imagines he will sit at the head of a big table, listen to his chosen sycophants, and then make executive decisions, firing anyone who gets in his way, including generals. Of course he admires an authoritarian dictator with absolute power, especially since he thinks Putin says great things about him. Of course, Putin did no such thing. As the skit on Trevor Noah's show illustrated, when correctly translated, Putin was not saying Trump was "bright" like Einstein, but more like "colorful" like Ronald McDonald. Putin has correctly diagnosed Trump as a narcissist who can easily be manipulated with praise. Trump is a "useful idiot".

  137. Yes, Mr. Trump is challenging the status quo. He wants new ways of thinking in the White House. This is obviously upsetting to the New York Times and some of its readers. Rather than fanning hatred for Trump what is her positive message? More bombs away for the Middle East, expanding debt for the middle class, and celebrating Wall Street greed?

  138. Trump is the status quo. Wealthy 1% will now own the White House as they own congress.

  139. Please point to Clinton plan indicating more bombs and more taxes on the middle class.

  140. I challenge your use of the word "thinking" in reference to Trump.

    It suggests the presence of a plan for something other than getting your attention.

    With respect to Clinton, it's obvious you're not listening and don't want to, so really, why bother?

  141. Calling Hillary Clinton "the lesser of two evils" is like equating an ice cream headache with a malignant brain tumor. The prospect of Donald Trump becoming president should be terrifying to anyone who values this country's ideals.

  142. Really Clinton effects me that way. I am terrified of this lying, untrustworthy woman whose answer to international problems is WAR. She is a neocon war monger who will bankrupt the nation.

  143. Please provide some actual facts, Judyw, that support your extreme characterizations of a long-time public servant. Do you really think Obama would have hired or kept her as SoS if she were the person you describe?

    Your opinion is worth NOTHING to anyone else without a basis in reality, which includes a great many facts that contradict your cartoon portrayal of a complex person in complex situations.

  144. It isn't that Trump is redefining or providing a new conception of leadership, although it may seem that way with his genuflections to Putin. Rather, he's either knowingly or unknowingly, playing upon our implicit understanding, inherited from the Greeks and passed down through Europe, that democracy--the rule of the people--needs to be supplemented by aristocracy, monarchy, even, occasionally, authoritarianism, in order to prevent the potential anarchy that lay just beyond the surface of democracy. All indications are that he's doing it unknowingly. But he's surrounded himself with people who have a long history of exploiting this tension in our political self-understanding for their own, usually nefarious, purposes. Even the Federalists, all the rage today perhaps due more to Broadway than any reassessment by those we call liberals of the principles of government, sought aristocratic, almost monarchical, counterbalance to pure democracy. Perhaps that counterbalance is necessary or desirable. It's a tension that deserves discussion.

    Let's not misunderstand this political tension--in Trump's hands it's a tale told by an idiot, but it's a tale nevertheless. It's a tale being worked out on the stage we call politics. We need to understand it properly, instead of throwing labels at it. Let's ask him directly how he feels about it and insist that he give us an answer. And, yes, we can do the same for Mrs. Clinton. My guess is she has already thought about it.

  145. I will never say Putin is a good man. However, a couple of points must be made. Trump is correct that Putin has been a strong leader in comparison to Obama's style. And please quit repeating the false 'talking point' that Trump asked the Russians to hack emails. His comments made in context were, 'Hey if you already have them please release them, we'd love to see them.' He never asked a foreign power to hack the U.S. The other candidate has however taken tons of money from oppressive regimes.

    It's also ironic that Trump garners criticism for wanting a better relation with the Russians, while the left continues to move the U.S. more and more into a socialist agenda.

    Which is more dangerous?

  146. Its dangerous to not see the potential for disaster. Putin doesn't want a better relationship, he wants the US on its knees and to revive the Soviet Empire. Being a dictator and strong leader are not synonymous. There is strength in thought, reflection, strategy. "Walk softly and carry a big stick". Braggadocio gets you no where but trouble.

  147. Your definition of "strong leader" seems to be a dictator who is above the law in a country whose citizens are at the mercy of his wrath.

    Are you an American citizen? Because your definition of "strong leader" would include Hitler, Mussolini, and Stalin.

    If you wonder why educated Americans are concerned, it is because unlike you, we like our leaders strong enough to recognize that our country is a democracy. That's why - unlike you - we have no respect or admiration for a man who only admires power and the riches it gives to the "strong leader".

  148. Mr. Trump is seeking a stronger relationship with the Oligarchs of Russia, so that he can consolidate the wealth of the world's 1%, eexploit the loyalties of the majority demographic of the United States, enrich himself, and turn the entire planet into a ghetto.

  149. Mr. Trump has only one criteria for judging the value of something -
    Does it in any way enhance me?

    Prizing a perceived compliment from an authoritarian thug, a religious leader, a heroic veteran, weak sycophant, or self-serving generals and advisors is the same for Trump. He is incapable of judging the attributes of the source. It means nothing to him.

    The sole consideration - does it pump up my false self- esteem? That is the depth of his intellectual and emotional capability.

    Republican fence walkers are in denial if they think the bottom line can be good with this person in the oval office.

  150. Ironic. Trump, among the most reactionary candidates in modern times, is being red-baited by Clinton, Democrats, and many Republicans. Her raucous voice is matched by NYT's uncritical applause of her statements. I haven't the slightest regard for Trump, who carries ethnocentrism/xenophobia to dangerous ends, but Clinton, of the two, is far more prone to ideological crusades, confrontations with Russia and China, and therefore war itself.

    Trump may be dumb, self-serving, an ego-maniac, authoritarian in mindset, but I submit that Clinton is worse, treacherous, a reservoir of deep resentments. Either one the winner, America is irreparably harmed. A sad future. But blowing up a contrast, in Clinton's favor, hardly solves anything.

  151. Submission without evidence is mere ad hominem attack: please support claims with at least some evidence that comes from somewhere other than the fevered imagination of the Drudge Report and its ilk

  152. Please give some examples to back up your statements about Clinton. What exactly has she done that is treasonous?

  153. I simply don't see how any TRUE conservative could have anything favorable to say about TRump. He is a failed businessman having never paid a debt if full, either to Wall Street or everyday contractors. He prefers totalitarian leaders. Clinton used a private email server, so what. Colin Powell even suggested that to her in a letter leaked yesterday. What is it that was so terrible, so treacherous that Clinton implemented. You believe the Trump hype and don't ask for facts.

  154. Those of us on the right have frequently complained about how, in our perception, President Obama has denigrated or apologized for our country to listeners overseas. What Donald Trump is doing here is at least as offensive to such a sensibility. Politics should stop at the oceans' edge and no one of either party has any business bad mouthing a sitting president to foreigners, especially when comparing him to a despot like Vladimir Putin.

    Over the last couple decades, I have noticed that partisans of either side have upped rhetoric regarding their domestic opposition out of any sense of reasonableness. I'm no fan of Barack Obama, but whatever I believe he has done worth condemnation doesn't even begin to approach that which Putin has done, and for a presidential candidate to suggest that is simply irresponsible and offensive.

  155. Obama has never apologized.
    He has taken responsibility.
    Acknowledging shortcomings is a sign of wisdom and maturity (e.g. Obama).
    Not acknowledging, let alone showing no awareness of, shortcomings is a sign of immaturity and cowardice (e.g. Trump/BushII).

  156. The question is, though, Kurt, who will you vote for in November?

  157. You and your party have become the party of Putin. Own it!!!!

  158. Donald Trump makes me ashamed of this country and the ignorant and sexist people who support him.

  159. I admire Trump for embracing Putin. Putin is a proven leader, well loved world-wide, unlike our, ahem, leader.

  160. Putin is a well-loved leader, worldwide?

    Well-loved?!?!

    Please list five world-wide countries whose leaders and people 'love' Putin. Just five! Off you go.

    (That 'clang' was the sound of a gauntlet being dropped.)

  161. And Stalin was a proven leader too...

  162. Yeah, the Georgians, Ukrainians and half of Syria all adore him.

  163. Trump will win in a landslide against Hil-liar-y . We former Bernie (traitor) supporters wil not go for Hil-liar-y. Trump is our choice.

  164. Trump is certainly not Bernie's choice, so I doubt if you ever really supported Bernie or his policies.

  165. I was a strong Bernie Sanders supporter, but I fail to understand why anyone who opposes Hilary Clinton because she has been known to lie would then throw their support behind a candidate who lies CONSTANTLY, gleefully and brazenly. Apparently it's not actually dishonesty that you oppose. Whatever it is, it must be mighty scary if Trump and all he represents is preferable. If only you would identify the terrible fault that Hilary has but Trump is free of.

  166. @Tiffiny - If you were really a Bernie supporter, I'm pretty sure he would not appreciate your denigration of him by demonstrating your impressive ignorance about everything he supports. Trump is the antithesis of progressive ideology.
    I was a Bernie supporter also. If Bernie were to read your many comments here in support of a small minded, monstrous ego with zero moral compass and no comprehension of what truth means, I'm pretty sure he would be horrified and embarrassed. I sure am.

  167. What could Trump be thinking other than postelection business interests? Does he think that there is a "silent majority" of voters who long for an authoritarian ruler like Putin, who orders his adversaries poisoned and invades neighboring countries, annexing their lands? It's true, Putin is hugely popular in Russia with style of "leadership." Does he think Americans are like Russians? It's hard to imagine how Trump could think so, but there it is, along with the litany of other bizarre and cynical opinions he seems to hold, and bizarre and insulting insinuations he makes.

    He seems to think the American people will choose a world wide wrestling spectacle than a serious debate about our future as a nation.

  168. Why are we surprised that Trump is a Putin fan club cheer leader?

    They are both thugs, willing to say and do anything to further their agendas.

    If Trump thinks so highly of Putin, he can always renounce his US citizenship and move to Russia.

  169. Thanks to Fox and other apologists, Trump doesn't get called out on this admiration of Putin and present day Russia. Let us not forget that he was a KGB foreign intelligence officer for 16 years and brings all of that baggage as well as his current transgressions to the table.

    Trump's comments about our military and wanting to apparently run the show at the Pentagon regarding who leads our armed forces smacks not only of someone who hasn't a clue about our history of maintaining separation between the promotion of military officers and the naming of commanders, but of someone who is the ultimate threat to our democracy and future.

    Going back through history, Britain's Kim Philby was an amateur in the treason department next to the threat posed by Donald Trump.

  170. Where is suggested that Trump would bow down to Putin as Clinton asserts?
    Putin has indeed snubbed his nose at Obama time and time again. The fact that Putin and Trump have a mutual respect is a positive for the USA. Together they could forge an alliance that could indeed wipe out ISIS.
    You must ask yourself how is it working out with the current administration? Which is largely what Clinton will continue on as.

  171. And what else would be wiped out? Women's freedom, children's hope, and the elderly insurance program (Social Security and Medicare), the National Park Service etc., etc. Don't be a one issue voter. Look at the broader picture if you dare.

  172. If Americans are so blind to world events we may end up with Trump. As this person so sadly can't see.

  173. Uhhmmm.....and what else has Putin done that you would "respect"?

  174. Paul Ryan disavows Trump's Putin remarks is the headline. Ryan lacks courage by not disavowing Trump himself is the subtext.

  175. Yeah, but look, if Trump is elected, who will really be running the show? It will be Ryan with his supply side Ayn Randy give everything to the rich and let the rest of us eat cake budget. That's why he is not so secretly hoping the nitwit monster will win.

  176. Someone has drilled a hole into Trump's brain during the Trump Tower construction, because quite a few synapses are missing. He is not connecting the dots; Putin is dangerous as the people of Ukraine and Syria in the first hand can witness. NATO's European partners are living the most tense times since cold war where Putin is fueling the flood of refugees into Europe and conducting new type of cyber and mis-information warfare. Clearly Trump's motivation is to get Russian investments into his development projects.

  177. The fact Trump is the nominee of one of the two dominant political parties makes me want to sit for the national anthem. It's downright embarrassing to see this clown treated as a legitimate candidate for office.

  178. Comrade Trump should just move in with his bff Putin and leave the US to those of us who love it.

  179. Our modern military is truly remarkable in its self-understanding of its role in the world and in American history and society. Even given major reactionary currents within it, it has remained a major underpinning of democracy. While it's unlikely that Donald Trump will be elected President, should that unlikely event occur, our military's self-understanding might well require drastic redefinition or a military coup. We should only support the latter.

  180. I fully support a military coup against President trump. i know its risky, and would threaten our democracy, but not as much as he will. I hope that prayers can be answered by a loving god, and thus have trump lose in a landslide.

  181. I believe most will refuse to carry out illegal orders or turn their weapons on citizens. But it could get very, very ugly all the same. Why dance blindfolded on the edge of a cliff, if you don't have to?

  182. By Trump's "logic," Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, Mugabe, Casto and . . . all were/are "great leaders" because they were strong men who got things done. No matter that they did evil things.

    As a foreigner, maybe it's none of my business to even ask . . . but can 35% (or whatever) of Americans actually believe this man is fit to be president? Sorry, Hilary isn't much better, but she at least seems rational.

    I -- and a lot of other people in the world -- wonder how the nation that once was led by the likes of Washington, Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Truman, et al. has been reduced to choosing between a dangerous kook and a backroom boy in a skirt for president? So sad for America and for the world.

  183. Well, we destroyed K-12 education in this country over the last decades, and we get an electorate that can no longer think for themselves. We've "taught to the test" for so long, critical thinking just doesn't exist among the "35%" as you not, although unfortunately it is a much higher proportion.

  184. Your depiction of Hillary Clinton is insulting and very Trumplike. Maybe you should look in the mirror.

  185. I have great respect for our friends and good neighbors in Canada. However, "Distant Observer", your comment "....boy in a skirt" is, in my view, sexist and offensive.

  186. Bannon, Mannafort, Lewandowski,, Bossy, Putin...Trump supporters.
    Scary

  187. Direct reports to the candidate? No one tops Huma Abiden.

    While employed at the Department of State, she held two other jobs including one at the Clinton Foundation. She co-ordinated much of the pay to play activity for Mrs. Clinton. Talk about a conflict of interest.

    Hey, we think Trump will be bad. But we know Hillary and her circle are about as corrupt as we've seen at this level of government. SOS being the second most important job in US government.

    Destroying emails following the receipt of a subpoena?

    Come on now.

  188. You might want to add the apparently unhinged General Flynn to your list.

  189. There is ZERO evidence of the Clinton pay-to-play of which you speak. Yes, it looks like pay-to-play, but the evidence for actual pay-to-play doesn't exist.

    On the other hand, the evidence of Trump's pay-to-play is overwhelming. First, he actually said that he pays off people. Second, the payment to the AG of FL Bondi is clearly a payoff to not participate in the Trump University lawsuit.

    You're engaging in selective outrage.

  190. Why all the fuss? Trump should be expected to admire a leader who acts without restraint!

  191. He's just staying on Putin's good side so he can open casinos in Russia.

  192. This latest pronouncement of Trump and Pence is an indication, perhaps more than many others, that Trump and his running mate are disqualified as viable candidates for the presidency and vice presidency. I know of no other incident in American history that has reached such a level where one candidate has openly embraced a dictator and an avowed enemy of the United States and avoided political retribution as a consequence. This was not a gaffe. This was not a misstatement among a series of political misstatements. This was his long held political position married to his racism. Pundits have failed to link Trump to his earlier discrimatory practices starting with housing to his campaign to delegitimatize Barack Obama with Birtherism. Trump feels so emboldened that he can come out of closet and openly exhibit his authoritarianism. Even more troubling are his fellow Republicans that are now in lock step with their nominee, who embraced Putin earlier. I wonder what Dwight Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan would do today with Trump. I would like to think they would immediately announce that they plan to vote for Hillary Clinton.

  193. It is chilling to hear Pence defend Trump's praise of Putin. Trump is a lunatic, but Pence is supposed to be a more responsible politician.

  194. I totally agree. Even more frightening are his blind followers who can't see where he's leading them.

  195. How can the only Trump quote in this entire article be "far more than our president"?
    Labelling this an "embrace" by Trump is disengenous partisanship.
    Putin clearly has far more control of his country than Obama has in the U.S.
    Obama is a weak leader who fails to build consensus and disdains bipartisanship.

  196. Putin kills and jails his enemies and journalists. That tends to help with control. He's hardly a consensus builder. It's curious that Trump doesn't know the most basic things about our constitution and government system but knows Putin's approval rating is 82%. Trump has a serious man crush on a dictator and wants to emulate him. Be afraid.

  197. So.....help me out here.
    I thought conservatives wanted Obama to have much less control over the country, not more?
    And yet the top of the GOP ticket shows admiration for a thug who does far 'more' than what you want Obama to do?
    Please explain.

  198. So you are faulting Obama for people who turn their back on him and note a lack of consensus and bipartisanship building as faults yet neither are required in Russia with a single party and party thought leader and Trump has made it quite clear, as a boss does, it's his way or the highway.

  199. The hypocrisy of his comments seems lost on some. Yes, Putin is a "strong" leader, keeping a tight grip on his people. He must. But why is that admirable?Does Trump aspires t replicate this method of governance in America? And while Russia's annexation of Crimea is more complicated than the media tends to portray, Trump's justification boils down to the fact that Putin was successful, and that America should have seized the oilfields of Iraq in like style. Trump respects power, achieved at any cost. The ends do justify the means, provided they are his ends. He is a dictator wannabe, and very dangerous.

  200. Why didn't Matt Lauer ask the jerk if he thought that the " tight control" of Putin is due to an authoritarian government and does Trump want the same here in the USA?

  201. The hypocrisy is lost on journalists in America!

    We have the two Republican candidates for this country's highest offices expressing clearly what they envision a "strong leader" to be and it is a man who is free to repress and jail anyone he deems "against his strong leadership".

    We have the Republican candidates telling the American people that "strong leadership" is far more admirable than democracy and following the law.

    And the press sits there and says "well Putin is very strong so it's perfectly fine to say that. At least it's not one of his slightly misleading statements that we don't like to call a lie."

    And people wonder how Hitler came to power. No doubt there were Germans who watched, as I do, the demise of any kind of critical press.

  202. It will be a delight when the New York Times reverts from Anti-Trump diatribes to journalism. Whatever one thinks of Trump politically, the current campaign is unedifying.

  203. Just like your favorite, Fox News.

  204. Brexit supporter I suppose?

  205. At times of demagoguery and dishonesty it is especially necessary for journalists to be persistent in exposing the depth and breadth of those affronts on truth. To merely report the statements of the offender is chronicling not journalism.
    The Jopurnaist's duty is to report the truth and it's context.
    To ignore the truth and parrot the false statement is to be complicit in the lie, to be the puppet to the puppeteer.

  206. Let's not forget that Stalin was a greater leader for his country than Eisenhower was for the U.S.

    And we may soon be hearing from Trump and his minions that, had it not been for the British and the French and the Russians, Hitler would have been seen as a greater leader for his country than FDR was for the U.S.

    Trump's candidacy is a disgrace; his election would be a national disaster.

  207. I forgot to mention this in an earlier post . . . I will not be at all surprised if in the coming weeks some of Clinton's "lost" emails one day appear on line. If Russian hackers have them and release them a few days before the election that will be a bombshell that will completely blow the doors off the 2016 presidential election (and give Putin no end of glee). I shudder to think of what that would mean. Crazy idea? This could never happen? I hope so.

  208. Wait, do you want it to happen? Confused.

  209. Richard Clarke, who the Bush administration disregarded at its peril before 9/11, and who was also the former White House cybersecurity adviser, suggested that the Russians could tamper with them or insert damaging fake emails and has also suggested good ways to protect the election system. http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/hack-election/story?id=41489017

  210. If Donald Trump likes Vladimir Putin so much, he must love Joseph Stalin and Vladimir Lenin even more. Also, what does Trump think of Adolf Hitler?

  211. Adolf was a strong leader with a high approval rating...

  212. Putin has an 82% approval rating. The 18% who disapproved are dead or in jail.

  213. I must return to the same point. The more we learn about Donald Trump the more clear it is that what he has done and says are so extreme and unusual that the claims against Hillary Clinton are so minor they are laughable.

    Picking a President should be a somber thoughtful process. Donald Trump does not fit that definition.

  214. I want to thank in advance the millions of voters who will pull the lever for Donald Trump. If he wins, I hope that they're very pleased with his performance.

  215. Treason by any other name.

  216. Mike Pence should be charged with treason, then he would have the opportunity to skip out on the US, and live happily ever after with his preference daddy, Vlad Putin.

    Difficult for me to measure the level of disgust.

  217. "I think it's inarguable that Valdimir Putin has been a stronger leaders in his country than Barack Obama has been in his."

    If Obama exercised power the way Putin does, Trump, Pence and every Republican member of Congress would be dead or in prison.

    Russia has a long history of such "strong" leaders. Before Putin there was that "Man of Steel" Joseph Stalin, Ivan the "Terrible," and Catherine the "Great," whose most reliable power tool was murder.

    Vald Putin is the latest "strong" man to lead Russian; the country that gave the world such words as gulag and pogrom, the country that perfected the practices of the secret police.

    Trump and Pence, and any and all who support them are speaking treasonous nonsense.

  218. And Trump would have been in jail or dead long ago if he had raised a birther issue as a Russian citizen with Putin. I guess he believes that Obama would have been a better president if he had taken the actions against him. I'll bet there are many Republicans who wouldn't mind if he did this to him now.
    And does anybody think Putin would tolerate a media outlet like Fox that spent virtually all its time making up lies about and denouncing him.

  219. Anyone who enthusiastically embraces Putin is either uninformed about who Putin and what he has done or doesn't value democracy and human rights. Either way, it truly speaks ill of Trump that he loves Putin.

  220. This is why Trump needs to release his tax returns to show he has no ties to Russian oligarchs and their petrodollars. The more he praises Putin and Russia, the more he raises questions about his financial past in the part of the world.

  221. He is not praising Putin. Get your fact from a real source that doesn't purposely distort. He is a businessman with billions of dollars, he has ties to everybody. That doesn't mean anything. Look at Hillary's ties to all the middle eastern countries.

  222. I mean, when was the last time you heard Obama tell someone to punch another guy out? HUH? Me and Putin, that's what we do. Ya got to be sure the other guy is down. Get someone to do it for you. Those second amendment people. Nice people. Armed. Hillary knows what I mean. Al Baldasaro, he's a guy who thinks like me, not afraid to put Clinton in front of a firing squad. You think Obama would say that? Guys a Constitutional Lawyer. Jeez - he thinks with his brain, for chrissake.

  223. Very nicely done!

  224. "Comrade Don" is a very dangerous man. He's unstable and would sell his mother for money. His comments about his BFF Putin are beyond unreal. He's a lunatic who should never hold office for anything.

  225. Let me preface my comments by stating I have been a lifetime Liberal Democrat,but I will not vote for either Clinton or Trump, but will vote for those that support Woman’s Choice, Gay rights & support the separation of Church & State.
    Trumps love affair with Russia should convince both Republicans as Well as Democrats that Trump does not represent the values of what I believe to be what America Stands for.Having said this, I can’t see how Liberal Democrats are in a position to criticize the Trump , Putin relationship, after Obama, & Kerry went to bed with Putin in signing the Iranian so called nuclear deal, & to further endear us to Putin by agreeing to allow Iran to turn over their nuclear fuel to Russia for safe keeping. In other words Russia is using the Iranian fuel to produce nuclear weapons for Iran.How do we sit sit down and agree to anything that Putin is agreeable to. On top of this fiasco, there wasn’t a whimper from Kerry or Obama about Russia’s support for the worst murderer since Hitler & Stalin, Assad.Obama has allowed Russia to take over the Crimea, & Eastern Ukraine, & does nothing to stop Russian bombers from killing those that are against Assad, that we support. Although, Russia promised to help defeat ISIS they have done little to nothing, in helping in our fight against these Terrorist Murderers.What is it about Putin that so endears him to both the Democrats & Republicans.2016 will go down in History as election of no choice.

  226. Ultra - Your comment has so many contradictions one doesn't even know where to begin?!? What rock do you live under? The first sentence of your comment makes no sense - If you're a lifetime liberal Democrat who "will vote for those that support Woman’s Choice, Gay rights & support the separation of Church & State." - and you're not voting for Hillary you're being dishonest about one or the other! You can't have it both ways!

  227. Clinton said Republicans holding or seeking office across the country should be pressed on whether they agree with Trump's comments, including his views on Putin and U.S. generals that surfaced during the forum.

    I agree, every chance a democratic opponent of a republican held seat campaigns he or she should bring this fact up and press their opponents on whether they agree with Trumps comments.
    This is an issue we can wrap our heads around.
    PLEASE THOSE IN THE NEWS MEDIA, DONT BE COMPLACENT DO YOUR JOB FOR ONCE.

  228. Mr. Trump might believe what he is saying - but who knows. He has blurted out so many outlandish things so the news organizations have something to chatter about. Sitting here reading the Times and considering that our candidate Trump likes Putin's strength and leadership more than our current President's is his opinion. But, what is more confusing are the standards he is using to compare the two. What are they? Is it a willingness to pick fights with smaller and weaker countries? Is it to poison and kill your country's citizens who disagree with you? We sure could use better journalists and interviewers to take away the OMG factor in Mr. Trump's comments and help us understand what he is really saying.

  229. How about, OMG, Trump trashes our President and says Putin is better. His campaign is sticking to it. He invited Russia to hack Clinton's e-mails. What other parsing do you need? As to that, as soon as Mr. Trump helps us understand what he is really saying, in this and other venues and sticks to it, we'll understand. However, that will never happen.
    When we DO understand it and enough people disapprove, he professes he was "being sarcastic". When the media reports something he doesn't like, he calls them "dishonest".
    With Howard Stern's interview, and subsequent interviews, available and out there to listen to Trump being pro-war, Trump says he was always against the war. Don't you get it, yet? There is no there, there, with Trump.

  230. Marco Rubio won't stand up and criticize Trump's outrageous comments because he did not want to “be a commentator.” An excellent demonstration of the leadership capabilities that served him so well in the primary and debates. What's wrong is wrong. Speak up you coward.

  231. Well now you know why Trump called him "Little Marco."

  232. When will Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell denounce the con man who is laying waste to what is left of the Grand Old Party?

    Where is the courage to speak up?

  233. Similarly, at least the Emperor Palpatine brought order to the Galactic Empire. What did the Jedi ever do for me? Bunch of losers.

  234. I struggle to understand how anyone in their right mind cannot see just how this man is not only unqualified to be President of the U.S.; but is in fact proving on a daily bases how dangerous he is to the very notion of democracy. Trump is the proverbial little man behind the curtain pretending to be the great and powerful Wizard of Oz;while singing the praises of a murderous Putin regime. For him to prefer the leadership of such a dictator over President Obama should tell anyone what kind of leader Trump would be if ;GOD FORBID; enough fools vote for him on Nov.8;2016. It would also be a signal to the whole world that Americans will believe almost anything this sad little liar says; no matter how pathetic it is. Kind of reminds me of a nation going down the same insane road in the 1930`s. ; and we know how that turned out. The world is indeed watching; and we are NOT impressed.

  235. Maybe in the the hinterlands of Eastern Canada, the Trump candidacy does not make any sense. And this is especially true if your only source of information it the American news media, which is likely given your location. But before you let your alarm run away with you, let me recommend that you get into a car and drive the American heartland for just an hour. There you will meet kind and caring people, just like the kind of people you know in NS, and there you will see the Trump sign outnumber the Clinton sign 20 to 1. The Trump movement is about average American fighting against being purposely disenfranchised by the Washington elite for the benefit of the wealthiest people on earth. Trump may not be the best messenger, but he is what we have, and he is vastly better than the alternative

  236. I understand that people from all political spectrums in the US are frustrated with our political leadership. But I'm curious how "kind and caring people" can support Trump knowing he isn't "the best messenger."

    You're admitting to being willfully ignorant.

    You're admitting that you support the guy who admires a head of state who jails and kills those who disagree with him (Putin literally has had people killed in contrast to the absurd accusations of murder leveled against Hillary.) You're admitting that you will ignore the racism, xenophobia, misogyny, narcissism and complete unfitness for the highest office in the world that Trump displays.

    If you consider Trump the better alternative, then the deeply negative impressions that Canadians and others have of our country are completely justified.

  237. Surely Republican leadership in concert with the RNC will denounce their candidate for what he is: a con man with no conscience, no principles and a danger to our democracy and the safety of our nation. Trump is no longer a joke riding in the Republican clown car. He's a menace and is destroying the Republican party.

  238. President Putin lives in the real world- a hard, uncaring and often cruel reality where the strong dominate the weak. We may not like, or want that world, but we have to be able to deal with it, function in it, and forcibly fight it if necessary. Our President here in America lives in a world that doesn't exist, a world where our adversaries, Russia, China, and Radical Islam will "listen" to use and "behave". That fantasy world doesn't exist . Adversaries don't play nice and the use of force (or its implied use by the strong) determines reality.We are seen as weak and indecisive, and by failing to stand up to aggression we have made the world a much more dangerous place for everyone. This White House has done more damage to America's standing and influence in the world than Putin ever could. Yes we have been selfish at times in our history, and we have been wrong at times. But the choice is simple for us and for the rest of the free world: The question remains. Who would you rather have run the world, America or its adversaries? For rest assured SOMEONE will always be running things, its up to you to decide who.

  239. And yet the United States is a superpower with its democracy and the countries you mention are not. This is a bizarre view of the world. The U.S. is a constitutional democracy with elected officials, not a third world power or empire. Russian trolls and Russian hacking have been all over this election, so definitely Russia is very concerned about American power, particularly under Hillary Clinton as opposed to an ignoramus bigot such as Trump.

  240. Wait a minute -- a vote for Putin-loving Trump is a vote *against* America's adversaries? How do you figure that?

  241. The only thing Trump has going for him is a big mouth and he says stupid stuff often. I guess some people admire "directness" mistaking frankness for truth. Just because you speak your mind doesn't mean what you are saying makes sense or is a wise choice. You do have to think before you speak. Trump rarely does that.
    Trump admires the authoritarian style of Putin because he mistakenly thinks that as "CEO of America" he can order subordinates around and his word is law. That may work in a closely held family owned business but will not work in the US government---unless of course Trump appoints family members to Cabinet posts and the Federal Judiciary. His sister is a Federal Appeals Judge. Imagine the total mockery of democracy with a Trump in the White House and on the US Supreme Court? I shudder to think. Then the Trump royal family would control America and the reign of Donald the First Emperor for Life will begin. We will have a dictator Putin in Russia and his compatriot dictator in America Trump. Since Trump and Putin admire each other so much maybe the United States and Russia will merge with Putin and Trump as equal "business partners". It's not as fantastical as it sounds---remember Germany in the 1930's and the rise of another populist demagogue who hated foreigners and started WW II.
    We cannot risk letting that kind of disaster happen again.

  242. Right wing Republicans who wear their patriotism on their sleeve supporting a Presidential candidate who praises a KGB thug and slanders our President. Welcome to the diseased mind of our new Republican Party, that has morphed into cheerleaders for Communist regimes. It is a sight to behold. With Trump numbers going up up up, I have come to the conclusion that the USA deserves him. It is time to become come a survivalist; our democracy is going from dissolution into bankruptcy.

  243. Trump has no concept of actions and consequences, no understanding of history and all that the word entails. To him, actions and consequences are independent of each other, as random as, well, history, at least in the realm of Trumpian intellect. A very small realm, by the way.

    Donald Trump's world is Penn and Teller writ on a continental stage, with all of his magic tricks but variations on a single theme: Pulling a rabbit out of the hat. Of course, it is a rather large hat, considering the ego it has to fit over.

    The reasons (really just one reason) Trump refuses to divulge how he will defeat ISIS, quadruple the military while reducing taxes, make coal miners wealthy, encircle our borders with an impenetrable wall, reverse global warming and cure cancer are all found in that hat. Penn and Teller don't reveal how their illusions work; why should Trump reveal how his delusions will, either.

  244. Melania Trump was born to a communist party member in the former Yugoslavia. How about this for a movie plot? Beautiful young girl is taken from her village, raised by the evil KGB mastermind (Putin), taught hypnosis, travels to the west to model, marries powerful real estate broker, and hypnotizes him at night to run for president and do her master's bidding.

    James Bond? Manchurian candidate? Or real life? Would it even be surprising in this election year?!?

  245. Compare the US economy with the Russian economy since Obama's election, and we see what Trump finds so admirable about Putin is not quality of life for the people, but control and military adventurism. Where will Trump get the money for his "rebuilding" the military? The same place Putin got his.

  246. Trump Putin 2016 Make Russia Great Again!

  247. It's not hard to be a "strong leader" when you run
    your country basically as a dictator, as Putin does.

  248. How anyone can support Trump and his positions on national security is beyond me. Putin's buildup in the Baltic region is causing headache throughout the region, and having an expansionist like Putin at the helm of a nuclear power is causing much fear and loathing. The Finnish President has expressed numerous concerns to NATO about this, and these concerns must be taken seriously.

    See the recent Bloomberg news article on the topic.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-07-06/...

  249. everyone cries that this man is a con artist. i do not agree. he is the latest manifestation of a cholera infected blanket seller. and he has lots of buyers. it seems to be the only explanation for his base supporters and their desire to buy more blankets. they got lauer to use one the other night. cholera worked before why not try it again. soon this craziness will abate for a week or two.

  250. He is being enabled by a media that has forgotten what real journalism is.

    Edward R. Murrow would be turning his grave. If the media treated Joseph McCarthy like they do Donald Trump, America might already have a long string of those "strong leaders" like Putin that Trump supporters admire.

  251. While I am not endorsing the actions of Putin it seems clear that Trump is correct, that Putin is in fact a much more skillful player on the international stage than Obama. Furthermore, the US has done much to antagonize the Russians, starting with our sponsorship of the overthrow of a democratically elected government in Ukraine because we did not like their pro-Russian stance, and including the eastward expansion of NATO despite the implicit promise at the end of the Cold War that it would not happen. Then there is Syria, where the US expects Russia to betray a long established alliance so that (who??) can take over the reins of government there.

    It is perhaps unjust to blame Obama alone for the failings of the US foreign policy establishment, but as Commander in Chief it is after all his responsibility to ensure that we pursue a coherent foreign policy, aimed at achieving justice, peace and stability in the world. At that Obama has utterly failed.

  252. Remarkably pro-Russian comment.

  253. It doesn't show that Putin is more skillful. It shows he has no conscience and does not feel bound by any generally-accepted rules. Probably why Trump admires him so.

  254. Expat:

    It appears you are serious. You should be serious about this too: US and Soviet/Russian national interests are not the same thing. And, I am pretty certain President Obama understands his responsibilities as Commander In Chief, and they do not entail promoting Russian National interests.

  255. Mr. Trump and Mr.Pence, since you both think Putin is a better leader than President Obama, I have a suggestion.

    Please move to Russia. Then continually criticize Putin the way that you criticize Obama. Good luck getting out alive.

  256. D. Trump reminds me of the story about the emperor with no clothes. Trump envisions himself as an "emperor" and is so vain that he responds in the affirmative to anyone who plays to his vanity. Putin must wake up every day laughing at Trump.

  257. I think Donald should actively pursue his bromance with Putin and move to Russia.

  258. And all his followers who adore "strong leadership" should move to Russia along with him. No doubt there will be no shortage at all of Russians more than thrilled to take their place under the "weak leadership" that marks a democracy like America.