Donald Trump has expressed his admiration of Russian leader Vladimir Putin on a number of occasions. The “bromance” between the two men has been well documented over the course of the 2016 presidential campaign. For example, in December 2015, Putin said of Trump:
“He is a bright and talented person without any doubt, an outstanding and talented personality.”
Trump responded to the praise by the controversial Russian de facto dictator by saying:
“It is always a great honor to be so nicely complimented by a man so highly respected within his own country and beyond.”
While the true nature of their relationship is unclear, as evidenced by Trump’s contradictory statements about meeting and then not meeting Putin, Trump has now gone way beyond admiration.
In his first press conference since accepting the Republican nomination, Trump literally asked for Russia to commit cyber espionage against his political opponent, Hillary Clinton. In typically bizarre style, Trump answered a question about charges that Russia hacked in to the Democratic National Committee by first saying how bad that it would be were that charge confirmed. He then immediately followed it by asking for Russia’s help. He said:
“Russia, if you are listening, I hope you are able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing. I think you’ll be rewarded mightily by our press.”
Sometimes you just have to see it with your own eyes to believe it, so the video is here: