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Former Australian PM: Trump acts like 12-year-old boy around Putin

Former Australian PM: Trump acts like 12-year-old boy around Putin

Former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull described former President Trump’s rhetoric around Russian President Vladimir Putin as that of an admiring “12-year-old boy.”

Speaking on Australian ABC’s “Q+A” show, Turnbull spoke about Trump’s interactions with Putin, saying they show the former president in “awe” of Putin.

“When you see Trump with Putin, as I have on a few occasions, he’s like the 12-year-old boy who goes to high school and meets the captain of the football team. ‘My hero,'” Turnbull said Monday. “It’s really creepy.”

Turnbull’s criticism comes after the former president compared the recent death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny to his own legal woes, and, unlike President Biden and other U.S. leaders, did not place blame on the Kremlin.

The Hill reached has out to Trump’s campaign for comment.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, in a recent interview with CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, also voiced concerns about Trump’s view of Putin.

“I don’t think he understands that Putin will never stop,” Zelensky said.

Turnbull also warned that Trump winning reelection in November could pose a threat to national security. He said the former president — who is the front-runner in the GOP primary — is leading a party “no longer committed to democracy.”

“The scary thing is that for countries like Australia and many European countries, we may find ourselves not dealing just with two autocracies in Russia and China, but what is Trump’s America going to look like?” Turnbull said. “This is a guy leading a party that is no longer committed to democracy as we understand it.”

Democratic lawmakers have also questioned Trump’s perceived friendship with the Russian President.

Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.) argued that were the former president to return to the White House, he would “hand the keys over” to Putin. She also said Ukraine’s fate would be sealed, with Russia’s invasion of the country having recently hit the two-year mark.

Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), an outspoken critic of Trump, recently claimed his comments on Navalny were “beneath the dignity of a human being.”

“You wonder, what does Putin have on Donald Trump that he always has to be beholden to him, his buddy in vileness?” Pelosi said last week in an interview on MSNBC.

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