Most of America’s allies and even some of its notable rivals have congratulated President-elect Joe Biden for his 2020 victory over President Trump, but there are a couple of big holdouts: Mexico, Brazil, and Russia. “We will work with anyone who has the confidence of the American people,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said Sunday on Russian state TV. “But that confidence can only be given to a candidate whose victory has been recognized by the opposing party, or after the results are confirmed in a legitimate, legal way.”
Putin isn’t exactly known for holding free and fair elections, much less tolerating the opposing party. “Based on Putin’s standard, the United States doesn’t need to recognize him as the president of the Russian Federation,” noted Yashar Ali.
U.S. intelligence concluded that Russia intervened in the 2016 election to help Trump, and tried to interfere in the 2020 election as well. Mostly, though, Putin’s goal is thought to be expanding and exploiting the existing polarization in the U.S. Putin said his decision not to recognize Biden’s win was “a formality,” and when asked if that might damage U.S.-Russian relations, he responded no, “there’s nothing to damage, they’re already ruined.”
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