President Donald Trump has claimed that he had a great meeting with the Russian president at Helsinki on July 16. The meeting and the press conference along with Putin where the president seemed to side with the Russian president against his own intelligence agencies brought a lot of flak from his opponents. However, there is a groundswell of support for the president, and CNN has reported that a CBS news poll showed that 68 percent of Republicans approve of Trump's handling of his summit with Putin.

Backlash

The backlash on the Helsinki summit has taken a back seat at the Republican National Committee summer meeting at Austin.

There was a lot of support for Trump, and many opined that he would complete his remaining two years plus term and continue to be the US president for the next four years. This was a welcome departure from the hornet's nest that Trump had stirred after the press conference.

Austin meeting

At the Austin meeting, most party officials applauded the performance of Trump and the news that he may invite Putin to the White House later this year brought in no criticism. Not many Republicans seemed bothered by Trump's assertion that the intelligence agencies were on a "witch hunt." The mood was summed up by a member of the national committee member from Illinois Demetra De Monte who opined that Trump was an "incredible President" and he looked forward to Trump not only completing his term but being president for another four years after that.

Some RNC members even agreed with Trump that the intelligence agencies and special prosecutor Robert Mueller were undermining the authority of the president,

Widespread support

The fact remains that Donald Trump does have widespread support and it was articulated by Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel who supported the president's meeting with Chairman Kim, though she did not comment anything on the meeting with Putin.

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Despite this support, a few top leaders like McCain are not convinced.

The closing of the ranks by Republicans was inevitable with the coming midterm elections. Fox News has reported that most Republicans feel that Trump's comments along with Putin on the US intelligence agencies were unlikely to affect the coming elections.

Putin

Donald Trump is a man who takes his decisions, and one cannot think he is a stooge of anybody. His propensity to surprise people is perhaps one of his strengths. His likely invitation to Putin to come to the US has surprised everybody, but no one is sweating about it.