Fallout after Trump-Putin meeting
Former CIA Director John Brennan just tweeted a strongly worded reaction to President Trump's news conference, saying it "was nothing short of treasonous."
Here's his tweet:
Russian President Vladimir Putin denied Russian interference in the 2016 US election. (Meanwhile, US intelligence agencies insist Russians did interfere.)
Trump declined to endorse the US intelligence community's assessment that Russia interfered in the election, saying Putin was "extremely strong and powerful" in his denial.
Instead, the US president repeatedly asked about the Democratic National Committee's email server and Hillary Clinton's missing emails.
Here's the moment:
So let me just say that we have two thoughts: You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why haven’t they taken the server? Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the Democratic National Committee? I’ve been wondering that. I’ve been asking that for months and months, and I’ve been tweeting it out and calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I want to know where is the server and what is the server saying? ...I have President Putin, he just said it's not Russia. I will say this: I don't see any reason why it would be, but I really do want to see the server. But I have — I have confidence in both parties. I really believe that this will probably go on for a while, but I don't think it can go on without finding out what happened to the server. What happened to the servers of the Pakistani gentleman that worked on the DNC? Where are those servers? They're missing. Where are they? What happened to Hillary Clinton's emails? 33,000 emails gone, just gone.
Today, Russian President Vladimir Putin, speaking at a news conference, welcomed President Trump to the World Cup hosts club and handed him a soccer ball.
Russia just hosted the World Cup this year. In 2026, the US, Mexico and Canada will host the championship.
"Speaking of the football, actually, Mr. President, I will give this ball to you and now the ball is in your court," Putin said.
Trump accepted the ball and tossed it to first lady Melania Trump.
"That will go to my son, Barron. We have no question. In fact, Melania, here you go," Trump said as he gave her the ball.
Watch the moment:
Russian President Vladimir Putin said he will look into extraditing the 12 Russians indicted by a US grand jury last week — but added that he's not familiar with the fully extent of the matter.
"I don't know the full extent of the situation. President Trump mentioned this issue. I will look into it," Putin said via a translator.
The Justice Department on Friday announced indictments against 12 Russian nationals as part of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election, accusing them of engaging in a "sustained effort" to hack Democrats' emails and computer networks.
President Trump insisted again today that there was no collusion and that he ran a "clean campaign."
"There was no collusion at all. Everybody knows it," Trump said.
He said special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US election has had a "negative impact" on the US-Russia relationship.
"It's ridiculous. It's ridiculous what's going on with the probe," Trump said.
The President said he also discussed with Russian President Vladimir Putin that there was "zero collusion."
President Donald Trump said on Monday he holds both the United States and Russia responsible for the breakdown in the relationship -- adding Russia to the mix after he said earlier Monday US policies and the special counsel's investigation were responsible.
"I hold both countries responsible. I think that the United States has been foolish. We’ve all been foolish," Trump said. "We should have frankly had this dialogue a long time ago. I think that we're all to blame. I think that the United States has now stepped forward along with Russia."
Trump said he feels that the US and Russia have "both made some mistakes."
Still, the US president again lambasted the special counsel's investigation stemming from Russian interference in the 2016 election as "a disaster for our country."
"I think that the probe is a disaster for our country. I think it’s kept us (the US and Russia) apart. I think it’s kept us separated," Trump said.
A reporter just asked President Trump about comments he made describing Russian President Vladimir Putin as a "competitor."
Here's what Trump said:
"I called him a competitor, and a good competitor he is. I think the word competitor is a compliment"
President Donald Trump said Monday that he raised the issue of election interference during his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, a topic, he said, where Putin “has an interesting idea.”
“I felt this was a message best delivered in person,” Trump said of bringing up the 2016 election interference.
He continued, “President Putin may very well want to address it and very strongly cause he feels very strongly about it and he has an interesting idea.”
He said the two leaders also discussed nuclear proliferation, the denuclearization of North Korea, and radical Islamic terrorism.
Putin said in his opening remarks that Trump brought up "so-called interference" during the meeting, noting that he "had to reiterate" that Russia had nothing to do with it.
President Trump said his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin had significantly improved the relationship between the two countries.
He that while the US-Russia relationship "has never been worse than it is now," he believes that has now "changed" after his summit with Putin.
"Our relationship has never been worse than it is now. However, that changed as of about four hours ago. I really believe that," Trump said.
Trump also said he believes that diplomacy with Russia, while perhaps not politically popular, is necessary.
"Nothing would be easier than to refuse to meet, to refuse to engage," Trump said. "But that would not accomplish anything."