Donald Trump Claims Clinton Has Been Outsmarted By Putin

David Goldman

LAS VEGAS – In a bizarre turn in the final debate Wednesday, Donald Trump once again stood up for Russian President Vladimir Putin and said that Putin has "outsmarted [Clinton] at every step of the way."

In an off-the-rails moment, the debate moderator Chris Wallace tried to gain control back.

"Mr. Trump," Wallace said.

"Mr. Putin has outsmarted her," Trump repeated.

"Mr. Trump, I do get to ask some questions," Wallace said."

Wallace then directly asked Trump whether he condemned cyber attacks on Clinton and her campaign's emails that national security officers have said came from Russia.

"Even if you don't know for sure whether they are, do you condemn any interference by Russia in the American election?" Wallace said.

Trump said no matter who it was, he condemned it.

"I don't know Putin. I have no idea," Trump said. "I've never met Putin. This is not my best friend. But if the United States got along with Russia, wouldn't be so bad. Let me tell you something, Putin has outsmarted her and Obama at every single step of the way. Whether it's Syria. You name it. Missiles. Take a look at the start-up that they signed. The Russians have said, according to many, many reports, I can't believe they allowed us to do this. They create warheads and we can't. The Russians can't believe it.

Trump added again Clinton had been "outsmarted by Putin."

"She has been outsmarted and outplayed worse than anyone we have seen ever," Trump said.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lauren Fox is a reporter at Talking Points Memo.
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