"...the fact that the Russian leader’s support among Republicans has nearly tripled over the course of a few years is extraordinary.
A Washington Post piece added, “That movement is likely attributable to Trump’s praise for Putin on the campaign trail…. In recent years, we’ve seen opinions on most every issue begin to track more and more with partisanship. Republicans like Trump, so they like who Trump likes. Period.”
Agreed. So much of politics is now driven by tribal instincts. Republicans had no use for the Russian autocrat – right up until he and their party’s president forged an awkward partnership.
For roughly a third of GOP voters, the calculus isn’t especially complicated: Trump likes Putin, Putin helped elect a Republican president, ergo, Putin’s not such a bad guy after all.
The question now is whether congressional Republicans will go along....