Vladimir Putin says Trump was impeached for 'made-up reasons'
(CNN) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his annual news conference Thursday that US President Donald Trump's impeachment was based on "made-up reasons," and expressed doubts that he will be removed from power.
The House of Representatives voted almost exactly along party lines Wednesday to impeach Trump for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Trump was the third president in US history to be impeached, and he now faces a trial in the Senate that is expected to start next month.
"Regarding the continuation of our dialogue till the end of Trump's presidency, you make it sound as if it's already coming to an end," Putin said answering a question about whether Russia has a strategy for continuing the dialogue with the US until the end of Trump's presidency.
"I actually really doubt that it is ending, it still has to go through Senate where as far as I know the Republicans hold the majority so it's unlikely they will want to remove the representative of their party for some made-up reasons."
Putin added: "This is just the continuation of the internal political battle, one party that lost the elections, the Democrats, and are now trying to find new ways by accusing Trump of collusion with Russia. But then it turns out there was no collusion, this can't be the basis for the impeachment. Now it's they came up with some pressure on Ukraine, I don't know what is the [pressure] but this is up to your congressmen."
The question was asked by Dmitry Simes, head of the Washington-based think tank Center for the National Interest, mentioned in the Mueller report for providing advice to Trump's campaign on Russia.
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