Former President George W. Bush acknowledged that there was evidence that the Russians tried to affect the 2016 presidential election, but said it was unclear whether they changed the outcome.
“There’s pretty clear evidence that the Russians meddled,” Bush said during a speech Abu Dhabi according to the Associated Press. “Whether they affected the outcome is another question.”
The former president made his remarks during a summit in Abu Dhabi conducted by the the Milken Institute.
In 2001, Bush famously said that he looked in Putin’s eyes and “was able to get a sense of his soul” calling him a man who was “deeply committed to his country and the best interests of his country.”
In his Abu Dhabi speech, Bush explained to the audience that Putin had “a chip on his shoulder.”
“The reason he does is because of the demise of the Soviet Union troubles him,” he said. “Therefore, much of his moves (are) to regain Soviet hegemony.”