Russian meddling: Trump's team under investigation

In the affair over possible Russian interference in the US elections, members of Trump's inner circle have for the first time been indicted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Trump advisor Papadopoulos has now admitted he was aware of the campaign team's ties to the Kremlin and said he would cooperate with the authorities. How dangerous is the affair for Trump?

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Público (PT) /

The house of cards is wobbling

The special counsel could indeed pose a serious threat to Trump, writes Público:

“Mueller's mandate is a broad one and he may open up further lines of investigation. ... This first charge in the investigation is enough for now. No one doubts anymore that there was Russian interference in the US election. Nor that it was aimed at boosting Trump's results. What remains to be proven is that this interference took place in consultation with - or at least with the knowledge of - Trump's former campaign chief. If one of those facing charges now points a finger at the Oval Office, it could be that Trump won't even get to celebrate a second year in office.”

Keskisuomalainen (FI) /

A growing liability for Republicans

It's no longer out of the question that the Republicans will turn their backs on Trump, Keskisuomalainen writes:

“The growing dimensions of the affair tie Trump's hands in foreign policy vis-à-vis Russia and his popularity is at an all-time low. ... Allowing two dubious businessmen who advised dictators to join his team was already seen as a sign of poor judgement on Trump's part. But as the crisis has spread numerous media in the US have also reported on his wavering judgement. ... Congress can dismiss the president on the grounds of incompetence or abuse of office. Even if Trump's Republicans dominate the two chambers of Congress it's not impossible that he will simply become too much of a political liability for the party too.”

Die Tageszeitung taz (DE) /

Democrats need to regroup politically

The investigation poses a bigger threat to the opposition Democrats than it does to Trump, the taz believes:

“The longer they cling to the idea that Hillary Clinton lost the elections 'because of Russia', the more time it will take for them to regroup politically. ... Bernie Sanders is now once more touring the country as an independent senator from Vermont, explaining from meeting to meeting why Trump's plans for tax reform, health insurance, stopping migration and rearmament are so disastrous. He's doing the job the democratic party leadership should be doing. It, meanwhile, is clinging to the Russia investigation - and preparing its next crushing defeat in the Congressional elections in November 2018.”