Following last week’s revelations that the Federal Bureau of Investigation opened an investigation into whether Donald Trump is actually a Russian agent — an investigation that experts say takes “serious and substantial evidence” just to start, a Inquisitr reported — Trump’s 2016 presidential election opponent Hillary Clinton took to Twitter Monday to remind Americans that she called Trump a “puppet” of Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2016, and she told Trump to his face.
During the first debate between Trump and Clinton on October 19, 2016 (per CNN), Trump unleashed what he saw as an insult toward Clinton.
“Putin, from everything I see, has no respect for this person,” Trump said on the Las Vegas debate stage, gesturing toward Clinton.
“Well, that’s because he’d rather have a puppet as president of the United States,” Clinton replied, a statement which appeared to unnerve Trump.
“No puppet! No puppet!” he exclaimed, speaking over Clinton. “You’re the puppet!”
“You encouraged espionage against our people,” Clinton continued, referring to Trump’s public call on July 27, 2016, for Russia to infiltrate Clinton’s own email servers, as Inquisitr reported. “You are willing to spout the Putin line, sign up for his wish list: break up NATO, do whatever he wants to do. You continue to get help from him because he has a very clear favorite in this race.”
On Monday morning, Clinton retweeted a video clip of the “puppet” exchange on her verified Twitter account, with the single comment, “Like I said: A puppet.” See the video that Clinton retweeted, as posted by Talking Points Memo editor Josh Marshall, below.
October 19th, 2016 pic.twitter.com/QvmLUklSc1
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) January 12, 2019
Unknown to Clinton at the time, just hours after Trump issued his July 27 call for Russian hackers to attack Clinton’s email accounts, Russian hackers initiated an all-out attempt to break into her servers — servers which they had not previously attempted to infiltrate, according to indictments filed in the United States District Court for Washington, D.C. by Russia investigation special counsel Robert Mueller.
Monday’s retweet was not the first time that Clinton has trolled Trump on Twitter over his apparent willingness to bend to Russia’s interests; the same apparent willingness that sparked the FBI investigation, according to the New York Times.
On July 15, 2018, following Trump’s widely criticized joint press conference with Putin in Helsinki, Finland — at which Putin presented Trump with a soccer ball from the then-recently completed FIFA World Cup in Russia — Clinton took to Twitter.
Great World Cup. Question for President Trump as he meets Putin: Do you know which team you play for?
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) July 16, 2018
In a November 2017 interview with Mother Jones Magazine, Clinton said that she continued to stand by her assertion in the October 2016 debate that Trump is Putin’s “puppet,” and added that she questioned the “legitimacy” of Trump’s election victory due to the Russian interference designed to help him win.