In his weekly Sunday TV show, the Kremlin's top spin doctor warned that President-elect Donald Trump is facing a “coup d'etat” in the United States as the electoral college gathers to formalize the result of the U.S. presidential election.
Dmitry Kiselyov, a prominent propagandist for Russian President Vladimir Putin who hosts a show on the state-run Rossiya-24 channel, said the protests to persuade some electors to reject the results of the Nov. 8 vote — Trump won the presidency by securing an electoral college victory, though he lost the popular vote — was part of a dark plot to overthrow Trump.
“Donald Trump has not had time to take office, but he's already faced with attempts to overthrow him. We are talking about a coup d'etat,” said Kiselyov, who is also the head of state media organization Rossiya Sevodnya.
He accused a cabal of corporate interests and the American military industrial complex of spreading conspiracy theories about Russian meddling in the election: Electoral college “members are being told that Putin chose Trump [to be president.] Somebody is interested in pushing this theory, and this somebody has a lot of money. We are talking about large corporations and U.S. arms companies. They are for [Hillary] Clinton. She's compliant and quiet. These firms are not expecting any surprises from her,” Kiselyov said, according to a translation published by the Moscow Times.
Both the FBI and the CIA believe that the Kremlin attempted to influence the election in Trump's favor, an allegation Russia rejects.
Kiselyov, known for his hard-line right-wing and anti-Western views, has made numerous outlandish statements this year in defense of Trump. In September, he said American “oligarchs” and “special services” that traditionally loathe Russia may seek to “assassinate” Trump. On the eve of the Nov. 8 election, when it appeared that Trump would lose, he condemned the entire American democratic process.
“It has been the dirtiest campaign in the history of the United States,” Kiselyov said. “It has been so revoltingly foul that there is real disgust at the fact that … they still talk of democracy in America.”
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