‘Vladimir Putin would have preferred if Hillary Clinton won US election,’ says Donald Trump

U.S. President Donald Trump and Russia's President Vladimir Putin shake hands during the G20 Summit in Hamburg

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The US President argued that it was not logical to assume Russia wanted him to win the US Presidential election\
  • That’s because, he said, Clinton’s energy and defence policies were much more suited to Russia than his

NEW DELHI: Amid continuing speculation that Russia allegedly influenced last year’s US election outcome, US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday Russia would have much preferred it if his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton had won, because she would have “decimated” the American army and would have relied on “windmills” instead of exporting energy.

Trump elaborated on what he meant,

“So what I keep hearing about that he would have rather had Trump, I think ‘probably not,’ because when I want a strong military, you know she (Clinton) wouldn’t have spent the money on the military. When I want tremendous energy, we’re opening up coal, we’re opening up natural gas, we’re opening up fracking, all the things that he (Putin) would hate, but nobody ever mentions that” Trump told CBN.

Still, U.S. intelligence officials have concluded that Russia meddled in the 2016 US election to bolster Trump’s candidacy and weaken Clinton’s.

In his interview with CBN, Trump argued that it was not logical to assume Russia wanted him to win the US Presidential election because Clinton’s energy and defence policies were much more suited to them.

“We are the most powerful country in the world and we are getting more and more powerful because I’m a big military person. As an example, if Hillary had won, our military would be decimated. Our energy would be much more expensive. That’s what Putin doesn’t like about me. And that’s why I say, why would he want me? Because from day one I wanted a strong military, he doesn’t want to see that,” Trump told CBN founder Pat Robertson.

As for energy, Trump said he’s focussing on making the US self-supporting which again Putin wouldn’t like.

“And from day one I want fracking and everything else to get energy prices low and to create tremendous energy. We’re going to be self-supporting, we just about are now. We’re going to be exporting energy – he doesn’t want that. He would like Hillary where she wants to have windmills. He would much rather have that because energy prices would go up and Russia, as you know, relies very much on energy,” said Trump.

As for energy, Trump said he’s focussing on making the US self-supporting which again Putin wouldn’t like.

“And from day one I want fracking and everything else to get energy prices low and to create tremendous energy. We’re going to be self-supporting, we just about are now. We’re going to be exporting energy – he doesn’t want that. He would like Hillary where she wants to have windmills. He would much rather have that because energy prices would go up and Russia, as you know, relies very much on energy,” said Trump.

Trump’s comments came six days after his first meeting with Putin, and a day after his older son, Donald Trump Jr., tweeted images of emails which showed he arranged a meeting with a Russian lawyer after being offered information on Clinton’s campaign.

“If it’s what you say I love it,” Trump Jr. said in the emails, setting up a meeting with the lawyer.

In an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, Trump didn’t fault his son for agreeing to meet with the Russian lawyer, saying it was something any professional strategist would have agreed to.

“I think many people would have held that meeting. It was a 20-minute meeting, I guess, from what I’m hearing. Many people, and many political pros said everybody would do that,” Trump said n his son’s defence.

The US President also told the news agency he wishes he would have asked Putin when they met whom he supported in the US election.

“It’s really the one question I wish I would have asked Putin: Were you actually supporting me?” he told Reuters.Trump spoke about that first meeting with Putin last Friday, at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, with CBN’s Robertson.

He said he and Putin “get along very very well”, which he thought was a good thing because both the US and Russia are “tremendously powerful nuclear power(s)”.

“Everyone was surprised by the amount of time (spent at the meeting) but that was a good thing and not a bad thing… It doesn’t make sense not to have some kind of a relationship,” Trump added.

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