Julia Davis, writing at the Daily Beast, reports that Russian [State] Media Wants Moscow to Grant Asylum to Trump:
Russian state media—a reliable barometer of the mood at the Kremlin—remains fixated on election-related events in America. Affectionately referring to Donald Trump as “our Donald,” “Trumpusha” and “Comrade Trump,” Russian lawmakers, experts and pundits repeatedly have expressed their concerns about the future of Moscow’s all-time favorite U.S. president.
Co-host of Russian state TV news talk show 60 Minutes Olga Skabeeva brought up the possibility that President Trump would end up seeking asylum in Russia to escape any prosecutions in the United States following the conclusion of his sole presidential term. Skabeeva emphasized that this was by no means a joking matter: “It’s all very serious,” she said, as she pondered out loud about the nature of criminal charges Trump might soon be facing.
Experts in the studio enthusiastically discussed the likelihood of Trump being charged with a bevy of offenses from tax evasion to fraud and sexual assault. They concurred that Trump’s presidential pardon would not help him in state cases, unlike the recently advanced constitutional amendment in Russia that secured lifetime immunity from criminal prosecution for the country’s former presidents.
Russian state television is for educated Russians simply unwatchable propaganda, but many others tune in, and there’s probably a combination of seriousness and mock seriousness in this asylum offer: a sympathy for Trump that’s also condescension to a man they see as a needy fool.
(They’re not wrong about Trump’s weakness, as he’s flailing from election-lawsuit dismissal to dismissal in America, with state litigation and debts waiting for him in 2021. In four years, Trump has gone from insisting he alone could fix it to grifting supporters for donations while heading for the exit.)
Something like Trumpism – a combination of nativism, autocratic leanings, and crackpot economics – will surely persist.
Trump, himself, as a powerful force? That’s far less likely.
There is, however, always the chance that Putin’s looking for a small, amusing sidekick. Trump would do as well in that future role as he has done as president.