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Russia-US discord will leave with Obama administration: lawmakers' reaction to Trump's win

Russian lawmakers hope Russia's relations with the US will improve under the new US president

MOSCOW, November 9. /TASS/. Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election offers hope that it will be possible to overcome the crisis in the Russian-US relations, speaker of Russia’s Federation Council (upper house of parliament), Valentina Matviyenko, said on Wednesday.

"Judging by Mr.Trump’s election campaign rhetoric, one may express the hope, a cautious hope so far, that the US foreign policy will change and that the person who is not burdened with the previous administration’s decisions will be a realist, a pragmatist. There is a hope that constructive cooperation between Russia and the US will be built," Matviyenko said.

The senator noted that relations between the two countries could hardly be worse than they are now. "There is a hope that it will be possible to steer relations out of the crisis, because it is clear to any person that both the US and Russia, the American people and the people of Russia are interested in the mutually beneficial Russian-US relations," the speaker said.

According to Matviyenko, Trump’s victory also shows that US citizens "did not respond to the Russophobic rhetoric, which was obvious in remarks of (Democratic) candidate Mrs. Clinton and did not support this Russophobic hysteria." "This indicates that ordinary people do not have such sentiment," she said. The defeat of the ruling elite’s representative likewise shows that citizens are disappointed in the current administration’s policies and favor changes, she added.

"We are certainly interested in turning this page in tense relations between our two countries," Matviyenko said. She added that Russia and the US have many areas for cooperation, and the transition from confrontation to cooperation "could change the global situation to a large extent." "There is a hope, and we will make every effort to go over to this style of relations with the US," the speaker noted.

Russian-US discord will leave with Obama administration

According to lower house speaker Vyacheslav Volodin, there is a possibility that when the Obama administration steps down, the problems in the Russian-US relations that it created, including sanctions on Moscow, will disappear

"Sanctions are a tool used by the weak, when they run out of arguments," Volodin said when asked if he expected the new US administration to adopt a different position on the anti-Russian sanctions.

"Certainly, one can’t ensure mutual respect and meaningful relations by imposing sanctions and depriving others of the right to speak," the MP added. "All the problems that the outgoing US administration created, will possibly disappear when the administration goes," he assumed.

"Much will depend on the new politicians. We’ll see if they are able to adopt meaningful approaches, whether they are interested in dialogue and seek to solve problems," the State Duma speaker concluded.

Volodin also said Russia’s State Duma would be doing everything in its powers for the sake of building a constructive relationship with the US Congress.

"We will be doing our utmost for the sake of having a constructive relationship (with the US Congress - TASS) and for having a chance to discuss any issues. It is very important to turn an attentive ear to each other. It’s a two-way street," said Volodin, when asked about the outlook for future relations between Russian and US legislators.

He said Russia believed that inter-parliamentary relations should be developing, "in particular, in the wake of the election in the US, where the Republicans won the congressional election."

Volodin stressed the fact that the State Duma had always built relations with counterparts on the basis of mutual trust.

"We believe that we should have the same kind of relationship with legislators in the United States," Volodin pointed out.

He also warned against the use of double standards.

"We were able to see these quite often when a number of decisions were made and a number of issues were discussed. Furthermore, there should be no policy from the position of strength or defiance of other countries’ opinions," Volodin said.

"Current Russian-US relations cannot be called friendly. One would like to hope that a more constructive dialog between the two countries will be possible when the new president takes office," Volodin earlier told parliamentary reporters. "The Russian parliament will welcome and support any steps along these lines."

"It is important for us relations between our countries should be built on the basis of mutual respect and equitable partnership and cooperation should benefit both sides," Volodin said. "Only in that case we will be able to take our relations to a new level matching the interests of the two peoples."

Volodin recalled the Russian side had invariably stressed the idea that the presidential election was an exclusively internal affair of the United States and that Russia invariably respected the choice of the American people.

New page in Russian-US relations

The leader of the A Just Russia party in the State Duma, Sergei Mironov, hopes that Donald Trump’s presidency will turn a new page in Russian-US relations.

"It’s the choice of the American people. Russia will interact with the president the people of the United States will choose," Mironov said.

"Let’s wait till the final returns. Donald Trump will take office in January. A new life will begin. I do hope that it will be a new page in relations between Russia and the United States," Mironov told the media.

He recalled that Russia and the Soviet Union had always found it easier to clinch deals with the Republicans than with the Democrats. In particular, Mironov pointed out that Trump had no personal antagonism towards Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"Candidates’ election pledges are one thing and real life is something totally different," Mironov said.

 ‘Cracks in ruling class’

Russia’s Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov believes that the initial results of the US presidential election show cracks in the country’s ruling class.

"What we have seen so far shows that the US ruling class is facing a crisis and also that social divisions have been deepening in the US, the stronghold of imperialism and capitalism," Zyuganov stated.

At the same time, in his words, "no matter who becomes the next US president, be it Trump or Clinton, no major changes in Washington’s approach to Russia can be expected since the US strategy has been aimed at expansion for the last 200 years." According to Zyuganov, Trump is bound to pursue the same policy. However, as the Russian communists’ leader noted, "if Trump adopts a course to strengthen his position inside the country, then it will be somewhat easier for us (Russia)."

Equal relations with Moscow

There is hope that the next US president will build equal relations with Moscow, the ruling United Russia party’s General Council Deputy Secretary Sergei Zheleznyak told reporters.

"We expect the newly elected US leader will abide by international laws while determining his foreign policy, and build relations with Russia and other countries showing respect for their national interests," said Zheleznyak who is also Russia’s State Duma (lower house of parliament) Committee for International Affairs member.

Zheleznyak went on to say that "we respect the Americans’ choice and hope that we will succeed in establishing meaningful relations with the new US administration that would be based on equal dialogue and cooperation. Trump has been through a really tough campaign and he deserves to be congratulated on his victory," the MP said.

Trump will cooperate with Russia in constructive way

Chairman of Russia’s State Duma (lower house of parliament) International Affairs Committee, Leonid Slutsky, has expressed the hope that Republican nominee Donald Trump will cooperate with Russia in a constructive manner if he wins the US election.

"If it is Donald Trump with his main slogan, "Make America Great Again", then, in my opinion, America could again become great, if it observes the balance of forces and, together with us, advocates the development of a harmonious multi-polar world architecture of the 21st century," Slutsky told reporters on Wednesday.

"Let’s hope that in the event of Donald Trump’s victory, his rhetoric will be implemented in a constructive manner towards constructive cooperation with Russia, Europe and the integration associations in big Eurasia," the parliamentarian added.

‘Window of opportunity’ for improving Russian-US ties

According to head of Russia’s Federation Council (upper house of parliament) Committee for International Affairs Konstantin Kosachev, Donald Trump’s projected victory in the US presidential elections offers hope that Russian-US relations might improve.

The senator noted that he had doubted a Trump victory was possible until the very last moment since "the Americans have taught us that the system is always stronger." Kosachev believes that Trump’s win "opens a window of opportunities". At the same time he pointed out that "a window like that opened eight years ago when Obama won the election." He had brought new hopes with him encouraging the Noble Committee to award him the Peace Prize but we all know how it all ended," the senator resumed.

"Although hope remains, it hasn’t died yet. There is some hope for Russian-US relations though Trump may be stalled by the conservatives in Congress," Kosachev stated. "In any case, this is better than the hopelessness of a Clinton America," the senator concluded.

Head of the Federation Council Committee on Rules Vadim Tyulpanov, in turn, said that judging by the election results, the American people "have grown tired of the excessive aggression by the White House." "The public can see that the current policy of US authorities is based on lies and a distortion of facts," the senator noted.

"Donald Trump’s success means that US citizens want their country’s authorities to adopt a different domestic and foreign policy," Tyulpanov noted. He believes that by voting for Trump, US citizens agree with his statement saying that the world needs to pool its efforts, to join efforts with Russia, in particular. "Trump’s projected victory gives hope that Russian-US relations will be genuinely reset and the two countries will move towards fruitful cooperation," he concluded.

Moscow should send signal to new US president indicating readiness for dialogue

Kosachev also said that Russia should show the new US leader that Moscow is ready for dialogue.

"The chances of renewal in all areas, including Russia, are obvious. I believe that Russia should send the appropriate signals to make sure that the new US leader realizes that we are fully committed to the dialogue, and, most importantly, we want to be heeded," the senator said. According to Kosachev, there is no genetically or artificially cultivated anti-American sentiment in Russia, something that some politicians and experts like to talk about. "Nor do we have any desire to revive the Cold War or some kind of empire seeking to challenge the US," he added.

Kosachev noted though that Trump could encounter some difficulties while choosing the policy towards Russia. According to the senator, he will have to deal with anti-Russian sentiment in US Congress. "The pressure on the new US president may be exerted by US allies from the outside, above all, in Europe where the sentiment is somewhere between panic and disappointment," the parliamentarian stated.