Sen. Coons: Trump's 'Closeness' to Putin Is 'Alarming'

Trump rejects report that he hid details of Putin meetings

Trump responded to the story Saturday during a telephone interview broadcast on Fox News Channel after host Jeanine Pirro, a personal friend, asked the Russian Federation question.

"I like the symbol of me being here", Trump told Pirro.

After a G-20 meeting in Hamburg in July 2017, the president took possession of his interpreter's notes and instructed the linguist "not to discuss what had transpired with other administration officials", the Post reported, citing current and former USA officials.

The Post reported that the US interpreter present at the official Hamburg meeting was approached by other administration officials seeking more information about what the two leaders discussed. The secrecy "is not only unusual by historical standards, it is outrageous", says Strobe Talbot, former deputy secretary of state under Bill Clinton.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, tweeted on Sunday that his committee tried to subpoena the interpreter who, according to the Post, Trump attempted to silence.

Past year both House and Senate Democrats called on Trump's interpreters to testify on the president's meetings with Putin, including the leaders' July summit in Helsinki.

Bernstein told CNN on Sunday that Trump's actions had led White House insiders to believe he has become a "half-witting pawn" working on behalf of Vladimir Putin. "Unlike President Obama, who let Russian Federation and other foreign adversaries push America around, President Trump has actually been tough on Russian Federation".

"Are you now or have you ever worked for Russia, Mr. President?"Jeanine Pirro of Fox News asked him in an interview Saturday".

USA intelligence agencies have said Moscow tried to tip the election to Trump.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), appearing on CBS' "Face the Nation", similarly dismissed the Post report, arguing that Trump's administration has been tough on Russian Federation and that concerns about the president's affinity for Putin are unfounded.

Comey at the time was leading an investigation into Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 USA presidential election.

"My firing of James Comey was a great day for America", Trump claimed, describing the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director as "a Crooked Cop who is being totally protected by his best friend, Bob Mueller".

Whatever the facts, Democrats are eyeing a major dust-up and a chance to spend floor time blasting President Trump over allegations of election conspiracy with the Russians, along with the opportunity to make GOP lawmakers take a vote either defending or implicitly condemning the president.

Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., defended the president, who he said was "burned earlier by leaks of other private conversations". "I do it with all countries. After the rigged & botched Crooked Hillary investigation, where she was interviewed on July 4th Weekend, not recorded or sworn in, and where she said she didn't know anything (a lie),".

'Anybody could have listened to that meeting, it is open for grabs.

Trump was responding to a Washington Post report, which said he went to great lengths to hide details of his discussions with Putin. "By any measure, President Obama was much easier, was much more gentle on Russia", Cruz said.

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