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Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday that top Democrats are being sore losers by, in part, looking to blame Hillary Clinton’s stunning election loss on hacks said to have been orchestrated by the Kremlin.
“They are losing on all fronts and looking for scapegoats on whom to lay the blame,” Putin said. “I think that this is an affront to their own dignity.”
“It is important to know how to lose gracefully,” he added, suggesting Clinton’s loss was a result of a “gap between the elite’s vision of what is good and bad” and the “broad popular masses.”
Clinton recently suggested one of the chief reasons she lost to President-elect Donald Trump was because of Russian cyberattacks that she said aimed to “undermine our democracy.”
Putin’s Friday comments came in response to a question at his year-end press conference. A reporter asked for the Russian president’s response to President Barack Obama saying Ronald Reagan would “roll over in his grave” if he saw how many Republicans approve of Putin.
“I do not take support for the Russian president among a large part of Republican voters as support for me personally, but rather see it in this case as an indication that a substantial part of the American people share similar views with us on the world’s organization, what we ought to be doing, and the common threats and challenges we are facing,” Putin said.
The Russian president contended such shared values would be a “good foundation” to “build relations between two such powerful countries.”
Putin added that he believed Reagan would “be happy to see his party’s people winning everywhere” and cautioned Democrats against “taking the names of their earlier statesmen in vain.”
“The outstanding Democrats in American history would probably be turning in their graves,” Putin said. “Roosevelt certainly would be because he was an exceptional statesman in American and world history, who knew how to unite the nation even during the Great Depression’s bleakest years, in the late 1930s, and during World War II.”
Putin continued: “Today’s administration, however, is very clearly dividing the nation.”