All posts by MPolitics

Healthiest Presidents Ever? New Compilation Doesn’t Place Trump Among Fittest  

Despite Donald Trump’s recent official clean bill of health and an assertion from his personal physician that he would be the “healthiest president ever,” the current officeholder ranks 26 out of 44 U.S. presidents, according to a new assessment released to coincide with Presidents Day. 

At the top of the list of the overall health rankings is Rutherford B. Hayes, president from 1877 to 1881, who “had a healthy diet, was not obese and abstained from any tobacco use or alcohol abuse,” according to the report, published on a website that provides consumers with information about Medicare supplemental insurance policies. 

Runner-up is Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama, who left office at the relatively young age of 55. But Obama’s base score was lower than Hayes’ because of Obama’s “smoking and poor sleep habits,” according to the ranking.

Obama and Trump are the only two presidents “to not lose a point for health issues,” but the intensively competitive Trump may be chagrined to know he merits only a “C” compared to Obama’s “A” health grade. 

“I think he should probably accept that with good grace,” Iowa State University history professor Stacy Cordery told VOA News.

“Former President Obama was significantly younger than President Trump when he took office. Even though President Obama smoked for a big part of his life and President Trump does not, Obama is much more physically active.” 

Trump also totally abstains from alcohol, while his meal choices have been known to lean toward fast-food fare. 

Cordery says “any armchair physician” can observe Trump’s borderline obesity and his high stress level in a White House deemed chaotic. 

Only two presidents received an “F” health grade: William Taft (who tipped the scales at around 155 kilograms or  341 pounds), and at the bottom of the list, Grover Cleveland, due to a “very unhealthy diet, a complete lack of physical exercise and a penchant for both tobacco and alcohol abuse.” 

Cleveland, regarded as the second-heaviest president and the only one to serve a pair of nonconsecutive terms, also covered up a surgery for oral cancer at the beginning of his second presidency. 

Somewhat surprisingly, William Henry Harrison, earned a B grade and is considered the 26th healthiest president, despite serving only 32 days in the White House. After delivering the longest inaugural address recorded — one hour and 45 minutes — on a bitterly cold morning of March 4, 1841, the new president immediately took to bed with a bad cold that developed into a fatal case of pneumonia.

“Harrison’s premature death is certainly notable and was very severe (he received a large13-point deduction in health score for his pneumonia and subsequent complications), but our rankings took into account other factors such as diet,” according to study organizer Ryan Shevin of TZ Health Media, a division of Tranzact, which funded the report.

Some medical professionals and others may question how it can be fair to compare early presidents to more recent leaders, considering the vast improvements in medicine (as well as the once swampy climes of malarial Washington, D.C.) since the early days of the United States.

Founding father George Washington suffered from a long list of ailments, including malaria, smallpox, tuberculosis, dysentery, boils, tooth loss, hearing loss, infertility, tonsillitis complications, pneumonia, inflammation of the windpipe, throat infection and depression during illnesses.

“The overall quality of medicine/health care has clearly improved over time, but attempting to normalize or adjust for these differences would be a difficult task,” Shevin told VOA, explaining the study “chose a tally of health issues, rather than eliminating historically contextual illnesses such as smallpox.”

Relying on “bits and pieces in the archives” for most presidents “do not and cannot make a complete picture,” said Cordery, who has authored two books about President Theodore Roosevelt (who earns a “D” grade as the 36th healthiest president). “Anything like this where you’re trying to diagnose back in history is partly guesswork.”

The rankings were compiled after emailed answers were received from 27 presidential historians and doctors who were given general questions but not asked to rank the presidents, according to Shevin.

Tranzact researchers then considered a number of leading health indicators, including diet, exercise habits and sleep data, and tallied more than 58 health conditions that ultimately put Hayes on top and Cleveland at the bottom. 

While some may regard the rankings as subjective and thus open to argument, there is one common point of agreement among the historians and physicians: Being president of the United States is not good for one’s health.

Robert Watson, a professor of American studies at Lynn University, noted: “It is often said that a president ages at twice the normal rate while in office” due to holding “the most demanding office imaginable.” 

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Trump Blasts Oprah Over 60 Minutes Episode

U.S. President Donald Trump blasted media mogul Oprah Winfrey on Twitter on Sunday night over a segment on CBS’s 60 Minutes program and again said he hoped she would face him as an opponent in the 2020 presidential race.

Actress and television host Winfrey, now a contributor to the CBS program, led a panel of 14 Republican, Democrat and Independent voters from Grand Rapids, Michigan in a wide ranging discussion about Trump’s first year in office.

Trump tweeted: “Just watched a very insecure Oprah Winfrey, who at one point I knew very well, interview a panel of people on 60 Minutes. The questions were biased and slanted, the facts incorrect. Hope Oprah runs so she can be exposed and defeated just like all of the others!”

Winfrey has told various media outlets, including Entertainment Weekly, that she is not running for president, but has considered it, after there was much recent media speculation.

The panelists ranged from voters who said “I love him more and more every day,” to others questioning Trump’s stability, saying, “All he does is bully people.”

Winfrey made no declarative statements for or against the president in the program. But she did ask questions ranging from whether the country is better off economically to whether respect for the country is eroding around the world.

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Trump Blasts Oprah Over 60 Minutes Episode

U.S. President Donald Trump blasted media mogul Oprah Winfrey on Twitter on Sunday night over a segment on CBS’s 60 Minutes program and again said he hoped she would face him as an opponent in the 2020 presidential race.

Actress and television host Winfrey, now a contributor to the CBS program, led a panel of 14 Republican, Democrat and Independent voters from Grand Rapids, Michigan in a wide ranging discussion about Trump’s first year in office.

Trump tweeted: “Just watched a very insecure Oprah Winfrey, who at one point I knew very well, interview a panel of people on 60 Minutes. The questions were biased and slanted, the facts incorrect. Hope Oprah runs so she can be exposed and defeated just like all of the others!”

Winfrey has told various media outlets, including Entertainment Weekly, that she is not running for president, but has considered it, after there was much recent media speculation.

The panelists ranged from voters who said “I love him more and more every day,” to others questioning Trump’s stability, saying, “All he does is bully people.”

Winfrey made no declarative statements for or against the president in the program. But she did ask questions ranging from whether the country is better off economically to whether respect for the country is eroding around the world.

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Trump Stays Quiet on Shooting Victims, Fumes Over Russia

President Donald Trump spent the holiday weekend hunkered down at his Florida estate, watching cable television news, grousing to club members and advisers and fuming over the investigation of Russian election meddling.

 

In a marathon series of furious tweets from Mar-a-Lago, Trump vented about Russia, raging at the FBI for what he perceived to be a fixation on the Russia investigation at the cost of failing to deter the attack on a Florida high school. He made little mention of the nearby school shooting victims and the escalating gun control debate.

The president has grown increasingly frustrated since the indictment from special counsel Robert Mueller on Friday charged 13 Russians with a plot to interfere in the U.S. presidential election.

Trump viewed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s declaration that the indictment doesn’t show that any American knowingly participated as proof of his innocence and is deeply frustrated that the media are still suggesting that his campaign may have colluded with Russian officials, according to a person who has spoken to the president in the last 24 hours but is not authorized to publicly discuss private conversations.

 

Trump was last seen publicly Friday night when he visited the nearby Florida community reeling from a school shooting that left 17 dead and gave rise to a student-led push for more gun control. White House aides advised the president against golfing so soon after the tragedy. Instead, he fired off tweets Saturday and Sunday and met with House Speaker Paul Ryan Sunday afternoon.

Trump fumed to associates at Mar-a-Lago that the media “won’t let it go” and will do everything to delegitimize his presidency. He made those complaints to members who stopped by his table Saturday as he dined with his two adult sons and TV personality Geraldo Rivera.

 

Initially pleased with the Justice Department’s statement, Trump has since griped that Rosenstein did not go far enough in declaring that he was cleared of wrongdoing, and grew angry when his national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, gave credence to the notion that Russia’s meddling affected the election, the person said.

 

Amid a growing call for action on guns, the White House said Sunday the president will host a “listening session” with students and teachers this week, but offered no details on who would attend or what would be discussed.

 

On Monday, 17 Washington students plan a “lie-in” by the White House to advocate for tougher gun laws. Students who survived the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland are planning a march on Washington next month to pressure politicians to take action on gun violence.

 

On Twitter, Trump stressed that the Russian effort began before he declared his candidacy and asserted that the Obama administration bears some blame for it. He also insisted he never denied that the Kremlin interfered in the 2016 U.S. campaign, although in fact he has frequently challenged the veracity of the evidence.

The president declared “they are laughing their asses off in Moscow”at the lingering fallout from the Kremlin’s election interference.

James Clapper, a former director of national intelligence, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the president was not focusing on the bigger threat.

 

“Above all this rhetoric here, again, we’re losing sight of, what is it we’re going to do about the threat posed by the Russians? And he never – he never talks about that,” said Clapper. “It’s all about himself, collusion or not.”

 

Trump tweeted about the nation’s “heavy heart” in the wake of the shooting in Parkland and noted the “ncredible people” he met on his visit to the community. But he also sought to use the shooting to criticize the nation’s leading law enforcement agency.

Trump said late Saturday that the FBI “missed all of the many signals” sent by the suspect and argued that agents are “spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign.”

 

The FBI received a tip last month that the man now charged in the school shooting had a “desire to kill” and access to guns and could be plotting an attack. But the agency said Friday that agents failed to investigate.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican and frequent Trump critic, called that tweet about the FBI an “absurd statement” on CNN’s “State of the Union,” adding that the “FBI apparently made a terrible mistake, and people should be held accountable. But we need leadership out of the executive.”

 

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Trump Stays Quiet on Shooting Victims, Fumes Over Russia

President Donald Trump spent the holiday weekend hunkered down at his Florida estate, watching cable television news, grousing to club members and advisers and fuming over the investigation of Russian election meddling.

 

In a marathon series of furious tweets from Mar-a-Lago, Trump vented about Russia, raging at the FBI for what he perceived to be a fixation on the Russia investigation at the cost of failing to deter the attack on a Florida high school. He made little mention of the nearby school shooting victims and the escalating gun control debate.

The president has grown increasingly frustrated since the indictment from special counsel Robert Mueller on Friday charged 13 Russians with a plot to interfere in the U.S. presidential election.

Trump viewed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s declaration that the indictment doesn’t show that any American knowingly participated as proof of his innocence and is deeply frustrated that the media are still suggesting that his campaign may have colluded with Russian officials, according to a person who has spoken to the president in the last 24 hours but is not authorized to publicly discuss private conversations.

 

Trump was last seen publicly Friday night when he visited the nearby Florida community reeling from a school shooting that left 17 dead and gave rise to a student-led push for more gun control. White House aides advised the president against golfing so soon after the tragedy. Instead, he fired off tweets Saturday and Sunday and met with House Speaker Paul Ryan Sunday afternoon.

Trump fumed to associates at Mar-a-Lago that the media “won’t let it go” and will do everything to delegitimize his presidency. He made those complaints to members who stopped by his table Saturday as he dined with his two adult sons and TV personality Geraldo Rivera.

 

Initially pleased with the Justice Department’s statement, Trump has since griped that Rosenstein did not go far enough in declaring that he was cleared of wrongdoing, and grew angry when his national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, gave credence to the notion that Russia’s meddling affected the election, the person said.

 

Amid a growing call for action on guns, the White House said Sunday the president will host a “listening session” with students and teachers this week, but offered no details on who would attend or what would be discussed.

 

On Monday, 17 Washington students plan a “lie-in” by the White House to advocate for tougher gun laws. Students who survived the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland are planning a march on Washington next month to pressure politicians to take action on gun violence.

 

On Twitter, Trump stressed that the Russian effort began before he declared his candidacy and asserted that the Obama administration bears some blame for it. He also insisted he never denied that the Kremlin interfered in the 2016 U.S. campaign, although in fact he has frequently challenged the veracity of the evidence.

The president declared “they are laughing their asses off in Moscow”at the lingering fallout from the Kremlin’s election interference.

James Clapper, a former director of national intelligence, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the president was not focusing on the bigger threat.

 

“Above all this rhetoric here, again, we’re losing sight of, what is it we’re going to do about the threat posed by the Russians? And he never – he never talks about that,” said Clapper. “It’s all about himself, collusion or not.”

 

Trump tweeted about the nation’s “heavy heart” in the wake of the shooting in Parkland and noted the “ncredible people” he met on his visit to the community. But he also sought to use the shooting to criticize the nation’s leading law enforcement agency.

Trump said late Saturday that the FBI “missed all of the many signals” sent by the suspect and argued that agents are “spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign.”

 

The FBI received a tip last month that the man now charged in the school shooting had a “desire to kill” and access to guns and could be plotting an attack. But the agency said Friday that agents failed to investigate.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican and frequent Trump critic, called that tweet about the FBI an “absurd statement” on CNN’s “State of the Union,” adding that the “FBI apparently made a terrible mistake, and people should be held accountable. But we need leadership out of the executive.”

 

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Washington Refocuses on Russia Probe after Latest Indictments

Washington is refocused on the Russia probe after Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment of 13 Russians accused of mounting a massive social media trolling campaign to help Republican Donald Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports President Trump unleashed a tweetstorm claiming personal vindication in the Russia investigation — something Democrats and others strongly contest.

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Washington Refocuses on Russia Probe after Latest Indictments

Washington is refocused on the Russia probe after Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment of 13 Russians accused of mounting a massive social media trolling campaign to help Republican Donald Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports President Trump unleashed a tweetstorm claiming personal vindication in the Russia investigation — something Democrats and others strongly contest.

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Trump: Russia Has Been Hugely Successful in Disrupting US Political Landscape

President Donald Trump said Sunday he believes Russia has been wildly successful in disrupting the U.S. political landscape with its interference in the 2016 election because of the subsequent months-long investigations it spawned.

“If it was the GOAL of Russia to create discord, disruption and chaos within the U.S.,” Trump said in a Twitter comment, “then, with all of the Committee Hearings, Investigations and (Republican) Party hatred, they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. They are laughing their asses off in Moscow. Get smart America!”

In a string of tweets over several hours, the U.S. leader continued to assail the probe into his campaign’s links to Russia.

Trump was also critical of H.R. McMaster, his national security adviser, who said Saturday there was “incontrovertible” evidence of Russian interference in the election, a day after special counsel Robert Mueller charged 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities with conducting an illegal “information warfare” campaign to disrupt the 2016 presidential election and help Trump win.

“I never said Russia did not meddle in the election, I said ‘it may be Russia, or China or another country or group, or it may be a 400 pound genius sitting in bed and playing with his computer,’ Trump tweeted. “The Russian ‘hoax’ was that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia – it never did!”

Trump said McMaster “forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only Collusion was between Russia” and his Democratic opponent, former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and other Democrats. Trump said McMaster overlooked Democratic funding of political opposition research in a controversial dossier alleging shady Trump links to Russian operatives.

Trump sarcastically praised one of his political opponents, Congressman Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, for saying that the administration of former President Barack Obama could have done more to thwart overseas cyberattacks after the 2014 hack into the files of the entertainment company Sony Pictures.

“I think that others around the world watched that and determined that cyber is a cost-free intervention,” Schiff said in an interview on NBC.

Trump tweeted, “Finally, Liddle’ Adam Schiff, the leakin’ monster of no control, is now blaming the Obama Administration for Russian meddling in the 2016 Election. He is finally right about something. Obama was President, knew of the threat, and did nothing. Thank you Adam!”

Trump added, “Now that Adam Schiff is starting to blame President Obama for Russian meddling in the election, he is probably doing so as yet another excuse that the Democrats, led by their fearless leader, Crooked Hillary Clinton, lost the 2016 election. But wasn’t I a great candidate?

Trump has long contended that his campaign did not collude with Russia, even as the U.S. intelligence community and now Mueller have concluded that Russia conducted a wide campaign to meddle in the election to help Trump win.

Mueller’s indictment of the Russian interests contended that the Internet Research Agency, a St. Petersburg-based social media company with Kremlin ties, 12 of its employees, and its financial backer orchestrated the effort.

None of the defendants charged in the indictment are in custody, according to a Mueller spokesman. The U.S. and Russia don’t have an extradition treaty and it’s unlikely that any of the defendants will stand trial in the U.S.

 

The 37-page charging document alleges that the Russian conspirators sought to coordinate their effort with Trump campaign associates, but it does not accuse anyone on the Trump campaign of colluding with the Russians.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said that the Russian conspirators sought to “promote social discord in the United State and undermine public confidence in democracy.”

 

The indictment marks the first time Mueller’s office has brought charges against Russians and Russian entities for meddling in the 2016 election.

 

Mueller’s sprawling investigation has led to the indictments of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and associate Rick Gates on money laundering charges in connection with their lobbying efforts in Ukraine that predates Trump’s 2016 campaign.

Former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and former campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos have pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about their contacts with Russian officials and are cooperating with Mueller’s probe.

In addition to investigating the Russian meddling in the election, Mueller is probing whether Trump has in several ways obstructed justice to undermine the investigation, including his firing of former FBI Director James Comey, who was leading the agency’s Russia probe at the time Trump ousted him. Mueller, over Trump’s objections, was then appointed by Rosenstein to take over the Russia probe.

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Trump: Russia Has Been Hugely Successful in Disrupting US Political Landscape

President Donald Trump said Sunday he believes Russia has been wildly successful in disrupting the U.S. political landscape with its interference in the 2016 election because of the subsequent months-long investigations it spawned.

“If it was the GOAL of Russia to create discord, disruption and chaos within the U.S.,” Trump said in a Twitter comment, “then, with all of the Committee Hearings, Investigations and (Republican) Party hatred, they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. They are laughing their asses off in Moscow. Get smart America!”

In a string of tweets over several hours, the U.S. leader continued to assail the probe into his campaign’s links to Russia.

Trump was also critical of H.R. McMaster, his national security adviser, who said Saturday there was “incontrovertible” evidence of Russian interference in the election, a day after special counsel Robert Mueller charged 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities with conducting an illegal “information warfare” campaign to disrupt the 2016 presidential election and help Trump win.

“I never said Russia did not meddle in the election, I said ‘it may be Russia, or China or another country or group, or it may be a 400 pound genius sitting in bed and playing with his computer,’ Trump tweeted. “The Russian ‘hoax’ was that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia – it never did!”

Trump said McMaster “forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only Collusion was between Russia” and his Democratic opponent, former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and other Democrats. Trump said McMaster overlooked Democratic funding of political opposition research in a controversial dossier alleging shady Trump links to Russian operatives.

Trump sarcastically praised one of his political opponents, Congressman Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, for saying that the administration of former President Barack Obama could have done more to thwart overseas cyberattacks after the 2014 hack into the files of the entertainment company Sony Pictures.

“I think that others around the world watched that and determined that cyber is a cost-free intervention,” Schiff said in an interview on NBC.

Trump tweeted, “Finally, Liddle’ Adam Schiff, the leakin’ monster of no control, is now blaming the Obama Administration for Russian meddling in the 2016 Election. He is finally right about something. Obama was President, knew of the threat, and did nothing. Thank you Adam!”

Trump added, “Now that Adam Schiff is starting to blame President Obama for Russian meddling in the election, he is probably doing so as yet another excuse that the Democrats, led by their fearless leader, Crooked Hillary Clinton, lost the 2016 election. But wasn’t I a great candidate?

Trump has long contended that his campaign did not collude with Russia, even as the U.S. intelligence community and now Mueller have concluded that Russia conducted a wide campaign to meddle in the election to help Trump win.

Mueller’s indictment of the Russian interests contended that the Internet Research Agency, a St. Petersburg-based social media company with Kremlin ties, 12 of its employees, and its financial backer orchestrated the effort.

None of the defendants charged in the indictment are in custody, according to a Mueller spokesman. The U.S. and Russia don’t have an extradition treaty and it’s unlikely that any of the defendants will stand trial in the U.S.

 

The 37-page charging document alleges that the Russian conspirators sought to coordinate their effort with Trump campaign associates, but it does not accuse anyone on the Trump campaign of colluding with the Russians.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said that the Russian conspirators sought to “promote social discord in the United State and undermine public confidence in democracy.”

 

The indictment marks the first time Mueller’s office has brought charges against Russians and Russian entities for meddling in the 2016 election.

 

Mueller’s sprawling investigation has led to the indictments of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and associate Rick Gates on money laundering charges in connection with their lobbying efforts in Ukraine that predates Trump’s 2016 campaign.

Former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and former campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos have pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about their contacts with Russian officials and are cooperating with Mueller’s probe.

In addition to investigating the Russian meddling in the election, Mueller is probing whether Trump has in several ways obstructed justice to undermine the investigation, including his firing of former FBI Director James Comey, who was leading the agency’s Russia probe at the time Trump ousted him. Mueller, over Trump’s objections, was then appointed by Rosenstein to take over the Russia probe.

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Russian Plot Touched Unwitting Grass-Roots Trump Supporters

The request was simple: organize or attend a sign-waving rally supporting Donald Trump. But some of the Florida Republicans on the receiving end of those requests now know that they didn’t come from Republican allies, but from Russian adversaries.

Caught up in an elaborate Russian plot without their knowledge, a handful of these small-time Trump supporters said their votes were not swayed and they didn’t do anything they weren’t happy to do. Still, their interactions with the Russians highlight the ways, both big and small, that the nation’s campaign process was infiltrated.

“I was going to do what I was going to do anyway. I was a Trump supporter, they didn’t convince me,” said Jim Frishe, a real estate development consultant and candidate for county office, who organized a sign-waving event in Clearwater that was part of a statewide series of rallies promoted by the Russians.

​Russian-organized rallies

The Florida rallies are one small facet of the indictment issued Friday by special counsel Robert Mueller charging 13 Russians and three Russian companies with interfering in the 2016 election. The most detailed allegation of illegal Russian meddling to date, it says they assumed U.S. identities, sowed discord on social media, communicated with “unwitting” Americans and even set up political rallies from afar.

As part of that, the indictment says the Russians used a Facebook group, a Twitter account and other “false U.S. personas” to organize coordinated “Florida Goes Trump” rallies Aug. 20, 2016. They reached out to campaign staff, grassroots groups supporting Trump, and specific individuals to participate.

Frishe, 68, said he was called by someone identifying themselves as with a group called “Florida for Trump” and asked to organize a sign-waving rally. He said between 15 and 18 people showed up and that he didn’t receive any signs or money or other support. He never heard from them again.

He said he was not overly concerned about the indictment, or his minor role in the drama, and that Russian interference is “nothing new.”

“It’s not surprising,” Frishe said. “It doesn’t have a huge impact in this country.”

Effort sizable

Still, the indictment details a sizable effort to disrupt the 2016 presidential election, aimed in part at helping Republican Donald Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton. It involved creating internet postings in the names of Americans whose identities had been stolen; staging political rallies while posing as American political activists; and paying people in the U.S. to promote or disparage candidates.

Lilia Morraz was another person who put together an event. She said she got involved after she encountered the (at)March_for_Trump account on Twitter, one of the accounts the Russians used.

“I am really active on Twitter. They were saying Trump was not going to be elected. I happened to write to them and say it’s not true,” said Morraz, 60, of Miami.

Morraz said that from there, she was asked about good places to hold a rally in Miami and then “they told me, yes, go ahead and do it.” So she organized an event outside a restaurant that both she and (at)March_for_Trump promoted. She said hundreds attended and she made signs herself and received no money.

Morraz was skeptical about a Russian plot.

“I just don’t believe it. It’s like everything you see on TV. I don’t believe 90 percent of it,” she said.

Identity used

Another Florida Republican, Betty Trigueiro, says she didn’t attend the Florida Goes Trump rallies. But her name and phone number were included in a Facebook post promoting the event without her permission.

Trigueiro, 62, of Bradenton, said that in August 2016 she started getting some Twitter messages from people she did not know with details on pro-Trump events. She thinks they may have gotten her contact information from her time as secretary of a local Republican club. She said she never attended any of the events.

While she was troubled that there appeared to efforts to “infiltrate and cause chaos,” Trigueiro wasn’t convinced the outcome was impacted.

“There was too many people that wanted him elected,” she said.

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