Ahead of his scheduled phone call with the Russian president on Saturday, Trump is considering unilaterally lifting sanctions imposed on the country by the Obama administration, Politico editor Susan Glasser reported Thursday.
On Friday, Trump counselor Kellyanne Conway appeared on Fox and Friends to confirm “all of that is under consideration”:
It’s further evidence of Trump’s unusually cozy relationship with Russia, whose alleged hacking of last year’s American presidential election on Trump’s behalf prompted former President Barack Obama to take a series of retaliatory actions against the foreign power in December.
Even Fox and Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade appeared a little apprehensive about the new administration’s posture Friday, asking Conway if the Russians would have to “change their behavior in order to get those sanctions lifted—like not carving up other countries, and not destroying families and towns indiscriminately like they’re doing in Syria.”
Conway offered Kilmeade a half-hearted responses—“Yes, he will call out other nations when he believes it’s not in the American interest or the interest of humanity”—but nothing to dispel the notion that Trump is beginning to be exactly what Hillary Clinton accused him of being: Putin’s puppet. If one of the Russian president’s longterm strategic goals is to sow distrust in American democracy, Trump is doing more than his part to help with that as well.