Trump almost alone in Russian Federation meddling doubts

Bipartisan Criticism Faced By Trump Over Press Conference With Putin

The press conference closed out the Trump-Putin summit, in which the American president delivered what amounted to a warm embrace to the man who for years has been isolated by the US and Western allies for Russia's activities in Ukraine, Syria and beyond.

President Donald Trump said Monday he sees no reason why Russian Federation would interfere in the 2016 election and declined to endorse US intelligence assessments of the matter.

"Today's press conference in Helsinki was one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory", he said.

House Speaker Paul Ryan delivered a strongly worded statement saying there's "no question" that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 presidential election.

He pitched the idea when asked if he would extradite 12 Russian spies accused of hacking Democrats during the campaign to the US where they could face trial.

During the press conference, Putin said he did indeed want to Trump to win the 2016 - because of his policies - but took no action to make it happen.

The trickiest part of the summit concerned the Kremlin's hacking of Democratic party emails, which were released in 2016 to damage Hillary Clinton when she was the party's presidential candidate.

"They said they think it's Russia", Trump said.

- Trump said, "Putin was incredibly strong and powerful in his denial today".

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats distanced himself from his boss in the White House, issuing a statement saying the U.S. intelligence community's judgement that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 election was "clear".

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He added, the probe is a disaster for the USA, and there is zero evidence of any collusion.

Some career diplomats also expressed alarm. The US president took Putin's side over that of his own intelligence community, and refused to acknowledge that Russian Federation hacked the 2016 presidential election. But I have - I have confidence in both parties. "However, I also recognize that in order to build a brighter future, we can not exclusively focus on the past - as the world's two largest nuclear powers, we must get along!"

"Donald Trump's press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of 'high crimes & misdemeanors.' It was nothing short of treasonous", said John Brennan, director of the Central Intelligence Agency from 2013 to 2017.

Other congressional Republicans, including House Speaker Paul Ryan and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who until now had issued only muted criticism of Trump's attitude toward Russian Federation, were more critical on Monday. "Because he talked about bringing the U.S. Russian Federation relationship back to normal", Putin said.

The press conference, in which President Trump reiterated his belief that Russian Federation didn't interfere in the 2016 election, generated rare bipartisan agreement: prominent Republican and Democratic lawmakers agreed the meeting was a catastrophe for USA global interests. Trump, too, said he wanted to focus on what he called "the helping of people".

"On the world stage in front of the entire globe the president of the United States essentially capitulated and seems intimidated by Vladimir Putin", Clapper told CNN.

Mr Putin said he and Mr Trump have maintained regular contact through phone calls and meetings at worldwide events, but "the time has come to have a thorough discussion on various global problems and sensitive issues". It gave no further details.

Trump was also quickly rebuked by some of his most dependable media allies. I have President Putin - he just said it's not Russian Federation.

Trump is being strongly criticized for his uncritical approach to Russian Federation. Following up on a tweet he posted early Monday morning, Mr. Trump said at the press conference that he holds "both countries responsible" for tensions between the nuclear powers. "We made the same case when I was in Moscow a couple weeks ago".

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