U.S. Spy Chief Pushes Back on Trump Over Russia's Election Hack
- Author: Leroy Wright Jul 17, 2018,
Jul 17, 2018, 23:10
Unbowed by the broad condemnation of his extraordinary embrace of a longtime US enemy, President Donald Trump declared Tuesday that his summit in Helsinki with Russian President Vladimir Putin went "even better" than his meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies last week in Brussels.
The fresh indictments had prompted a number of USA senators, all but one of them Democrats, to request Trump cancel his summit with Putin.
Trump on a Democratic National Committee server: "You have groups that are wondering why the Federal Bureau of Investigation never took the server".
US Journalist forcibly removed from Trump-Putin news conference - he had a hand written sign secret service objected to. The president's press conference today was an embarrassment.
"The probe in a disaster for our country".
Sen. Thom Tillis of North Carolina issued a statement criticizing Russian Federation, but not mentioning Trump.
"I do feel that we have both made some mistakes". I think that the United States has been foolish. "We've all been foolish", he said, before veering into discussion about his election victory. Everybody knows it. People are being brought out to the fore.
Putin, for his part, also hamstrung Trump, admitting that he wanted Trump to win over Clinton.
Putin appeared to smirk as Trump ignored shouted questions about whether he would warn the Russian leader against meddling in the 2018 midterm elections.
"Speaking about having the ball in our court in Syria", Putin said, in an awkward change of subject. Russian Federation poses a grave threat to our national security.
McCain went on to say that: "President Trump proved not only unable, but unwilling to stand up to Putin".
His skepticism drew a quick formal statement - nearly a rebuttal - from Trump's director of national Intelligence, Dan Coats.
"Any statement by Vladimir Putin contrary to these facts is a lie and should be recognized as one by the President".
"I don't see any reason why it would be [Russia]", Trump said.
Most of his answer to the question was consumed with conspiracy theories about the FBI's response in 2016 to the hacking of Democratic networks, and "missing" Clinton emails and DNC servers. "I think it's kept us apart". Even so, Putin made one interesting admission.
"I was an intelligence officer myself".
American politicians on both sides of the aisle, as well as former US intelligence officials and diplomats, began sharply criticizing Trump's remarks, even before the president had boarded Air Force One for the flight back home. Allowing that Russian Federation interfered in the election is not equivalent to saying that Russia's actions swung the election in favor of Trump, but the president can not seem to distinguish between the two.
During their joint news conference, Mr Putin insisted the Russian state had never interfered and would never interfere in the American electoral process, dismissing the claims as "nonsense". He said he favored the celebrity businessman because of his policies. In the most recent, Americans say, 45 percent to 29 percent, that it's a legitimate issue.
"This entire trip has just been one giant middle finger from President Trump to his own country". Trump was unable to move beyond the campaign rhetoric of 2016 or stand up for United States national interests. It was a disgrace to our country. He said he would investigate the report and even offered to "cooperate".