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Topic Of Putin Dominates Obama's Last News Conference Of 2016

President Obama all but named Vladimir Putin as the force behind cyber-attacks on Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party, and he lamented he couldn't do more to stop the killing in Syria.

CBS 2 Political Reporter Derrick Blakley reports on the president's year-end news conference.

Obama says he's certain Russia hacked the emails of Clinton's campaign chief, John Podesta, and the Democratic National Committee.

"Not much happens in Russia without Vladimir Putin," he said.

That's as close as he'd go naming Putin directly, but it was close enough.

He said he's troubled that many supporters of Republican President-elect Donald Trump don't believe U.S. intelligence that Russia was involved.

"Over a third of Republican voters approve of Vladimir Putin, the former head of the KGB. Ronald Reagan would roll over in his grave," Obama said.

The president admitted he was unsuccessful in finding a solution to bring peace to Syria.

Despite the carnage, he still believes relying on U.S. airstrikes and arming moderates on the ground was the best option for America.

"Unless we were all-in and willing to take over Syria, we were going to have problems. Everything else was tempting, because we wanted to do something and it sounded like the right thing thing to do, but it was going to be impossible to do this on the cheap," Obama said.


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