I've never seen anything like this in my life. You have a man who goes to visit someone who the US considers untrustworthy and our enemy and he has a private, unrecorded meeting with him, after which he sucks up publicly while trashing the United States. Watch the video at that previous link and you too will be appalled.
There is just so much continual lying by Trump. First, he went to Russia and had an entirely private meeting, without any one but translators present, and NO read-out on what was discussed for 2 hours. The Russia side actually was the one that came out with what was discussed but without any type of proof or witnesses, who the heck knows? 7/19-
Mr Putin, in a speech to Russian diplomats in Moscow on Thursday, hailed the Helsinki summit as "successful overall and led to useful agreements."
Mr Trump calling the summit a “great success,” tweeting that he is looking forward to the second meeting “so that we can start implementing some of the many things discussed, including stopping terrorism, security for Israel, nuclear proliferation, cyber attacks, trade, Ukraine, Middle East peace, North Korea and more.”
But across his administration there was a different sentiment. US officials at both the State Department and Defense Department were not able to confirm any of the agreements that Mr Trump has been referencing, and in some cases contradicted the US President on some of the ideas floated in the two-hour meeting with Mr Putin.
A senior US State Department official played down the public outcry about the meeting. “Nothing of substance has changed from what it was before the meeting”, the official who spoke on condition of anonymity told The National. He argued that, Mr Trump’s rhetoric aside, the policy trajectory for Washington remains the same.
The US State Department was also at odds with the White House over Russia’s request to question 11 US citizens including former ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul. While the White House said the request is under consideration, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert called it “absurd”.
“The overall assertions that have come out of the Russian government are absolutely absurd...We do not stand by those assertions that the Russian government makes,” she said.
His comments at the press conference he held with Putin were beyond astonishing. From whitehouse.gov
Q Thank you. Mr. President, you tweeted this morning that it’s U.S. foolishness, stupidity, and the Mueller probe that is responsible for the decline in U.S. relations with Russia. Do you hold Russia at all accountable for anything in particular? And if so, what would you consider them — that they are responsible for?
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Yes, I do. I hold both countries responsible. I think that the United States has been foolish. I think we’ve all been foolish. We should have had this dialogue a long time ago — a long time, frankly, before I got to office. And I think we’re all to blame. I think that the United States now has stepped forward, along with Russia. And we’re getting together. And we have a chance to do some great things, whether it’s nuclear proliferation, in terms of stopping — because we have to do it. Ultimately, that’s probably the most important thing that we can be working on.
But I do feel that we have both made some mistakes. I think that the probe is a disaster for our country. I think it’s kept us apart. It’s kept us separated. There was no collusion at all. Everybody knows it. People are being brought out to the fore.
Ugh. How terrible that Trump said that the United States has been foolish and has made mistakes. Makes him look weak, plus how does this make America great to trash the United States. He also got back on his favorite hobby horse about the Mueller probe. You can read the transcript to see how much he talked about his own election, which he must be very insecure about since he keeps bringing it up.
Then, he was asked about the intelligence information showing that Russia interfered with the election.
Q Thank you. A question for each President. President Trump, you first. Just now, President Putin denied having anything to do with the election interference in 2016. Every U.S. intelligence agency has concluded that Russia did. What — who — my first question for you, sir, is, who do you believe?
My second question is, would you now, with the whole world watching, tell President Putin — would you denounce what happened in 2016? And would you warn him to never do it again?
PRESIDENT TRUMP: 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?
With that being said, all I can do is ask the question. My people came to me — Dan Coats came to me and some others — they said they think it’s Russia. 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? Thirty-three thousand emails gone — just gone. I think, in Russia, they wouldn’t be gone so easily. I think it’s a disgrace that we can’t get Hillary Clinton’s 33,000 emails.
So I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today. And what he did is an incredible offer; he offered to have the people working on the case come and work with their investigators with respect to the 12 people. I think that’s an incredible offer.
What he said was so treasonous that he was forced to do a press conference the next day to *correct* what he had said the day before. However, he really didn't correct the record, but continued to muddy it up. (He added in his own handwriting no colusion (sic) -hah) Worse, his ridiculous comment that he meant to say "wouldn't" when the whole context of what he said makes it clear he was not condemning Putin is insulting to American patriots. Why would he not stand up to Putin and why did he have an unrecorded, unaccountable meeting?
So I’ll begin by stating that I have full faith and support for America’s great intelligence agencies. Always have. And I have felt very strongly that, while Russia’s actions had no impact at all on the outcome of the election, let me be totally clear in saying that — and I’ve said this many times — I accept our intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election took place. Could be other people also; there’s a lot of people out there.
We actually do NOT know if Russia had an outcome on the election. Now he switches over to his favorite tic, "Collusion".
There was no collusion at all. And people have seen that, and they’ve seen that strongly. The House has already come out very strongly on that. A lot of people have come out strongly on that.
I thought that I made myself very clear by having just reviewed the transcript. Now, I have to say, I came back, and I said, “What is going on? What’s the big deal?” So I got a transcript. I reviewed it. I actually went out and reviewed a clip of an answer that I gave, and I realized that there is need for some clarification.
It should have been obvious — I thought it would be obvious — but I would like to clarify, just in case it wasn’t. In a key sentence in my remarks, I said the word “would” instead of “wouldn’t.” The sentence should have been: I don’t see any reason why I wouldn’t — or why it wouldn’t be Russia. So just to repeat it, I said the word “would” instead of “wouldn’t.” And the sentence should have been — and I thought it would be maybe a little bit unclear on the transcript or unclear on the actual video — the sentence should have been: I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be Russia. Sort of a double negative.
Um. No, he's trying to make it like it was an error out of the blue, easily fixed by changing a word. But it wasn't. And, what's weird is that even in the above he waffled "could be other people also; there's a lot of people out there". No, this was about Russia. Is he a pansy that can't stand up to Putin? If not, why the heck not?
Q Mr. President, is Russia still targeting the U.S.? Is Russia still targeting the U.S., Mr. President?
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much. No.
Q No, you don’t believe that to be the case?
THE PRESIDENT: No.
Thank you very much everybody.
Q But can you just clarify, you don’t believe that to be the case?
THE PRESIDENT: We’re doing very well. Let me tell you, we’re doing very well. And we’re doing very well, probably as well as anybody has ever done with Russia. And there’s been no President ever as tough as I have been on Russia. All you have to do is look at the numbers. Look at what we’ve done. Look at sanctions. Look at ambassadors not there. Look, unfortunately, at what happened in Syria recently. And I think President Putin knows that better than anybody, certainly a lot better than the media. He understands it. And he’s not happy about it, and he shouldn’t be happy about it — because there’s never been a President as tough on Russia as I have been.
Q Earlier, Cecilia asked the President, “Is Russia still targeting the U.S.?” He said, “No.” Is that what the President actually believes? Did he understand the question? And is his position that, no, Russia is not doing anything to interfere or meddle in the 2018 election?
SANDERS: I got a chance to speak with the President after his comments, and the President was — said, “Thank you very much,” and was saying “no” to answering questions. The President and his administration are working very hard to make sure that Russia is unable to meddle in our elections as they have done in the past and as we have stated.
Q So he does believe it’s going on?
SANDERS: Well, since there’s currently not an election today, not specifically, but we certainly believe that we are taking steps to make sure they can’t do it again. Unlike previous administrations, this President is actually taking bold action and reform to make sure it doesn’t happen again. But he does believe that they would target, certainly, U.S. elections again.
Q Is there any distance between the President and the DNI Coats, who said that the red lights are blinking on this topic? Do they completely agree?
SANDERS: No, as I just said, that’s why we’re taking steps to ensure that these things don’t happen again. We wouldn’t actually spend as much time and effort as we are if we didn’t believe that they were still looking at us.
From the beginning of his administration, President Trump has actually taken action to defend our election system from meddling and interference.
What's completely absurd is that Trump is considering, at all, giving up Americans to Russia to be investigated.
Q I want to follow up on Maggie’s question, because she asked about the idea that Putin offered of essentially allowing Robert Mueller and his investigators to go to Russia to oversee or witness the interrogations of the Russian military intelligence officers if the U.S. would reciprocate and have Russian investigators come here to watch American citizens face questions about the crimes that they allegedly committed in Russia.
The President called it an interesting idea. He said it was an incredible offer. Why we would he say that?
SANDERS: He said it was an interesting idea. He didn’t commit to anything. He wants to work with his team and determine if there’s any validity that would be helpful to the process. But again, we’ve committed to nothing. And it was an idea that they threw out.
“It is a proposal that was made in sincerity by President Putin, but President Trump disagrees with it," press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement. "Hopefully President Putin will have the 12 identified Russians come to the United States to prove their innocence or guilt."
The White House response comes after almost 24 hours of criticism from Democrats, Republicans and former diplomats that added to the hailstorm of criticism Trump has received over his meeting with Putin in Helsinki earlier this week.
Sanders's statement was issued moments before the Senate was set to vote on a resolution that warns Trump against handing over former U.S. diplomats to Russia.
Putin suggested during Monday's meeting with Trump that he would let U.S. law enforcement travel to Russia and observe the questioning of 12 Russian intelligence officials indicted in special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe in exchange for Russian authorities being allowed to question U.S. citizens “who have something to do with illegal actions in the territory of Russia," including Michael McFaul, a former U.S. ambassador to Russia.
Trump called it an "incredible offer” at Monday’s joint press conference with Putin, and White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday that the president would discuss the possibility with his team.
However, the White House seemed to be largely on an island in its consideration of Putin’s request.
Yeah, tha'ts Trump. Out on an island called Fantasy Island.
And now Trump has invited Putin to the White House in the fall. Here's Dan Coats, DNI, hearing the news
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