The president-elect just responded to the new U.S. sanctions against Russia, and his response borders on actually being substantive and serious — but, still, Trump in his response does, in fact, keep one foot squarely in the “who gives a darn I’m president now deal with it” camp.
The Obama Administration announced the harsh sanctions against Russia Thursday afternoon in response to the Kremlin-directed cyberattacks carried out against the U.S. Democratic Party throughout the months before Election Day.
These cyberattacks seriously undercut Hillary Clinton’s bid for the presidency, while bolstering Donald Trump’s campaign — and, what makes it even worse is that Trump, the Russians’ favored candidate, is going to be the next president.
Also Thursday, Obama administration officials announced that, as an additional measure of response to the cyberattacks, a few dozen Russian diplomats would be expelled from the United States. Some reports have identified these diplomats as Russian intelligence agents.
Trump has long maintained — in the face of mountains of evidence — that the allegations against the Russians that they hacked the Democratic Party were false. At one point, following the circulation of evidence from the CIA incriminating Russia, Trump dismissively called the CIA the “same people who said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.”
His Thursday statement, following the sanctions announcement, was almost serious, and almost ditched his prior disregard of the gravity of the situation — almost.
‘It’s time for our country to move on to bigger and better things. Nevertheless, in the interest of our country and its great people, I will meet with leaders of the intelligence community next week in order to be updated on the facts of this situation.’
— CBS News (@CBSNews) December 29, 2016
The fact that he’s even going to “meet with leaders of the intelligence community” to be “updated on the facts” of the situation with the U.S. response to Russia’s hacking is a huge step.
Trump has been refusing his daily intelligence briefings for weeks. Now, however, he is, by all appearances, at least going to show respect to that most everyone else except him is fully convinced that the Russians are guilty, even if he doesn’t, due to pride reasons or whatever, publicly acknowledge the Russians’ guilt.
Mind you, it’s still far from an ideal response, as Trump claims in his post-sanctions announcement statement that “it’s time for our country to move on to bigger and better things,” thus poisoning any good tidings that may accompany the fact that at least Trump is going to meet with intelligence leaders.
In some respects, there’s literally nothing “bigger” in the United States at the moment than the fact that a man whose presidential campaign was energized by the illegal activities of a government that is historically hostile towards the United States is about to become the next president.
Featured Image via Jabin Botsford/ The Washington Post via Getty Images.