August 4, 2017 | Quoted by Laura King and Sabra Ayres - The Los Angeles Times
U.S.-Russia sanctions flap can be exploited politically by both Putin and Trump
Both leaders can probably use the current imbroglio over U.S. sanctions to score political points with their respective domestic bases, analysts say. And after the sanctions bill that Trump reluctantly signed Wednesday, Kremlin and White House talking points have contained some striking similarities — suggesting that despite the seeming animosity, Trump and Putin may not actually be so far apart in their views.
But if Trump seems more sympathetic toward Russia than he is, for example, toward Congress, that also sits well with supporters. Opinion surveys point to a measurable increase in favorable attitudes about Russia among his GOP base, said Eric Edelman, a veteran diplomat who is now a senior fellow at the Miller Institute at the University of Virginia.
Trump can thus depict himself as thwarted in attempts to build a constructive relationship for Moscow after his face-to-face encounters with Putin last month at the Group of 20 summit in Germany, Edelman said.
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