If Donald Trump becomes the next president of the United States, he claims he’ll have one notable friend that President Barack Obama does not: Vladimir Putin. On a visit to his Scottish golf resort, Trump told reporters that he’d make good friends with Putin as president, he’d get along well with British Prime Minister David Cameron and now “expects” that he’ll be the next occupant of the Oval Office.
“I think I’d get along very well with Vladimir Putin, I just think so,” he said. “People say ‘What do you mean?’ I think I’d get along well with him. He hates Obama and Obama hates him, we have unbelievably bad relationships.”
It’s no secret that the relationship between Washington and Moscow has been strained in recent years as Russia has increased aggression in Ukraine and tumult in Syria and the Middle East have mounted.
Trump has soared in polls since announcing his candidacy in June, even while he has been the target of harsh criticism on several fronts. In his announcement he blanket-categorized Mexicans as "rapists" and has kept running with controversy that doesn’t seem capable of slowing him down. He said earlier this month that Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., isn’t a war hero even though McCain is well known for being a prisoner of war who endured torture in Vietnam. Most recently, a '90s biography of Trump showed that his ex-wife had categorized a sexual encounter with her-then husband as “rape.” She has since backtracked on that claim.
The Donald has still managed to eclipse his Republican counterparts in the polls. A poll out Wednesday showed him taking 25 percent of the vote for the GOP nomination, with a double-digit lead over former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the closest rival.
Trump is currently polling at 19.8 percent in an average of recent polls calculated by Real Clear Politics. There is some reason for worry in the Trump camp, however, as key swing state polls out last week showed that voters had a negative impression of him there.