Meanwhile, Trump's good friend Vladimir is making sure there are no surprises in store for him just in case the US decides to return the favor from 2016 as far as election meddling goes: it's hard to lose an election when you're basically the only candidate.
Russian election officials on Monday formally barred Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny from running for president, prompting calls from him for a boycott of next year’s vote.
The Central Election Commission decided unanimously that the anti-corruption crusader isn’t eligible to run.
Navalny is implicitly barred from running for office because of a conviction in a fraud case which has been viewed as political retribution. He could have run if he was given a special dispensation or if his conviction was cancelled.
Incumbent Vladimir Putin is running for a fourth term in office and is widely expected to win the March 18 election.
Over the past year, Navalny has mounted a grassroots campaign which reached out to the most remote corners of Putin’s heartland.
Navalny is the most serious challenger that Putin has faced in all his years in power, and the court cases against him have been viewed as a tool to keep him from running for office.
In a pre-recorded messaged that was released minutes after the Election Commission handed down the decision, Navalny called on his supporters to boycott the vote.
“The procedure that we’re invited to take part is not an election,” he said. “Only Putin and the candidates he has hand-picked are taking part in it.”
“Going to the polls right now is to vote for lies and corruption.”
You'd better believe Trump is taking notes. Putin convicted and jailed Navalny on a bogus "fraud" charge and now all the guesswork has been taken out of the elevtion in March. I guarantee you that Trump is asking if "his" Justice Department can't find a charge to hang on some Democrats to keep them from running.
Those "Lock her up!" chants aren't just for show, guys.