Mary Trump thinks the President is drawn to Vladimir Putin because the Russian leader is like his father. Donald Trump’s niece suggested he was primed to seek out people like Putin.
Mary Trump spoke to MSNBC’s Joy Reid on Wednesday about her uncle’s relationship with strongmen like the Russian president. She drew parallels to her grandfather, Fred Trump Sr.
“Fred had also primed Donald to be drawn to men such as [Roy] Cohn, as he would later be drawn to authoritarians such as Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un or anyone else, really, with a willingness to flatter and the power to enrich him,” she said.
Ms. Trump said the President might be trying to gain something from his relationship with Putin, but couldn’t say what that might be.
“I think there are plenty of reasons to believe that’s the case,” she said.
“But, you know, I can speak to the resemblance that Putin may have to my grandfather.”
“One of the things my grandfather did was, you know, through neglect, abuse, and pressure, was turn Donald into somebody who was eminently useful to smarter, and more powerful men.”
“And I think part of the charm, although, again, I am not privy to any conversations with them — I imagine Putin understands exactly how to manipulate Donald, you know, whether or not there are financial incentives.”
Trump recently defended Putin’s Russia arming the Taliban in Afghanistan.
Darragh Roche is a journalist covering U.S. politics and media