Four years ago Mitt Romney, the Republican nominee, stood before the American public and definitively stated that Russia was America's biggest "geopolitical foe."
This week, the far-and-away Republican poll leader Donald Trump gave Vladimir Putin a big, wet kiss, calling him "a strong leader" and saying it was a "great honor" to have Putin compliment him.
Trump's warm embrace of the Russian president has shocked and alarmed the Republican establishment. There's no secret about why Trump has psychologically tethered himself to Putin, whose bombast rivals that of the U.S. billionaire businessman and whose own strongman reputation reinforces Trump's. But as the United States and its allies try to beat back Russia's intrusions into Ukraine and Syria, Trump has ruffled countless feathers by cozying up to the Russian leader.