Trump says he believes Putin, not United States intelligence committee, on election hacking

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki Finland Monday

Trump Questions US Intel, Not Putin, on Russia 2016 Meddling

His 2016 opponent Hillary Clinton tweeted: "Great World Cup". He called the appointment of a special counsel on Russian interference and the involvement of USA persons in that effort, Robert Mueller III, a "disgrace" to the country and an impediment to his own efforts to improve ties with Russia.

Trump: "Mueller's probe is a disaster for our country".

Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., also condemned Trump's comments. "We made the same case when I was in Moscow a couple weeks ago".

Earlier, Trump blamed his own country's past "foolishness and stupidity" for the two powers' hostile relations.

"The president must appreciate that Russian Federation is not our ally", Ryan said.

He claimed to run a "clean campaign" and bragged about beating Clinton "easily".

Putin didn't want to see it, Wallace said.

Will Russia extradite the 12 Russians Mueller accused Friday of hacking?

Asked if he believed United States intelligence agencies, which concluded that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 election to help him defeat Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, he said he was not convinced.

"Our expectations are grounded in realism, but our hopes are grounded in America's desire for friendship, cooperation and peace", Trump said.

Putin said, however, that Russian Federation would impose "another condition", so that it was a "mutual" effort.

Trump's comments, and in particular his seeming acceptance of Putin's denial that Russian Federation had meddled in the 2016 presidential election, has sparked a furious backlash in the US, with senators from both parties condemning that assertion and Trump's performance generally as betrayal and a capitulation to Putin.

At the press conference, Trump refused to acknowledge Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election.

But Mr Trump did not strongly condemn the interference efforts - which USA intelligence agencies insist did occur, including hacking of Democratic emails - the subject of last week's indictment of 12 Russians.

But this isn't the first time that Trump has faced intra-party criticism for his handling of Russian Federation, and in the past that hasn't translated into major repercussions from his base. "President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today".

"Russia is an authoritarian regime that has attacked our democracy and continues to undermine the security of the United States and our allies", her statement said. I will say this. He added: "I don't see any reason why they [the Russians] would have done it". "I think that's an incredible offer, OK?" I think - I'm speaking to you from London where Christopher Steele, the British spy lives and was based. Mark Warner (D-VA) had made a similar point.

"I was an intelligence officer myself".

"As far as I know there's nothing showing that Putin knew about it", he added.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called Trump's performance an embarrassment and suggested, without evidence, the Russians may have damaging information about the president.

However, why would Trump care if Putin interfered in the next election? John McCain, R-Ariz., chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, who called Trump a "novice politician" and said the damage inflicted by Trump's "naiveté, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is hard to calculate".

"It's hard to imagine an utter nonsense of a bigger scale than this", Putin said. In the most recent, Americans say, 45 percent to 29 percent, that it's a legitimate issue.

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

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