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Trump puts 'another victory on the scoreboard' for Russia

Donald Trump's firing of former FBI Director James Comey has plenty of critics -- but not in Moscow.
Image: Russian President Vladimir Putin responds to US President Donald Trump ordering missile strikes on Syria
A combo picture made reissued on 07 April 2017 shows US President Donald J. Trump (L) at the White House in Washington, DC, USA, 09 February 2017, and Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) in St. Petersburg, Russia, 03 April 2017.
On ABC's "This Week," George Stephanopoulos asked James Clapper, the former Director of National Intelligence, if Russia has "succeeded in their basic goal of undermining public faith in the U.S. democratic process?" Clapper said Russians "have to be celebrating with a minimal expenditure of resources and what they have accomplished."But the guest specifically pointed to Donald Trump firing FBI Director James Comey as a key development, not just in the scandal and its effect on U.S. institutions, but also because Comey was overseeing the investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to its allies in Moscow. "The Russians have to consider this as another victory on the scoreboard for them," Clapper added.
It's part of an under-appreciated dynamic. Indeed, the Washington Post had a good piece today on Vladimir Putin's government reaping unexpected rewards from the new Republican administration.

Russia has yet to collect much of what it hoped for from the Trump administration, including the lifting of U.S. sanctions and recognition of its annexation of Crimea.But the Kremlin has collected a different return on its effort to help elect Trump in last year's election: chaos in Washington.