(AlterNet) -- It seems increasingly, frighteningly possible that the U.S. presidential election may very well be influenced by Russian president Vladimir Putin. In our current political contest, the Russian president has clearly chosen a like-minded candidate to support, and mounting evidence suggests he is not just rooting from the stands, but possibly actively engaged in trying to ensure Donald Trump comes out on top. There is considerable evidence that Kremlin-backed actors are behind the cyberattack on the Democratic National Committee, and as Trump himself has suggested, they may possess thousands more stolen emails, potentially timed to create an October Surprise.
In other words, Putin, an anti-democracy autocrat, may be trying to move the pieces in a U.S. election to ensure a president who will help the Russian leader realize his expansionist vision and save his country's economy. Considering Trump’s team of Moscow loyalists, his reported reliance on oligarch cash, his endless praise of Putin—and his invitation to Russia to commit espionage against this country—it seems that Putin may be getting help from the Trump campaign.