National GOP reluctant to weigh in on Trump's Russia swirl

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"Say that again?" Coats said when NBC's Andrea Mitchell announced the news at the end of the on-stage interview. If I was loud & vicious, I would have been criticized for being too tough.

By the time he arrived home, the parade of critical statements had become a stampede, leaving Trump the most isolated he'd been in the White House since last year's controversy over white supremacist protesters in Charlottesville.

"The notion that President Trump would invite a tyrant to Washington is beyond belief", she said.

"I think it's imperative that he understand that he's misjudging Putin", Mr Graham told reporters.

Sanders said in a press briefing that topics discussed on Monday included, "Syrian humanitarian aid, Iran's nuclear ambition, Israeli security, North Korean denuclearization, Ukraine and the occupation of Crimea, reducing Russian and US nuclear arsenals, and of course, your favorite topic, Russia's interference in our elections". Later, Donald Trump said that he was waiting for a new meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Trump was asked at the end of Monday's summit in Helsinki with Russian President Vladimir Putin: "Who do you believe" - US intelligence, which accuses Russia of election meddling, or Putin, who denies it?

Five days after the two-hour Helsinki meeting, attended only by the two leaders and their interpreters, some USA officials remained in the dark about what was discussed.

He said at the United Nations he was "happy that the two leaders of two very important countries are continuing to meet".

Presidential aides said that they were also concerned that the DNI's comments would be interpreted by Trump as a personal betrayal, who lavished praise towards Coats in a recent interview with CBS News.

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The White House on Friday rejected a proposal by Putin to hold a referendum to settle the future of that region.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday of the proposed Russian questioning, "That's not going to happen".

"There are many answers, some easy and some hard, to these problems. but they can ALL be solved!"

"But the conversation between Trump and Putin at the private meeting is even murkier waters, surprises from which we can unfortunately certainly hear more about soon".

"The sentence should have been: 'I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russian Federation, '" he said.

The top U.S. intelligence official said Saturday he meant no disrespect to President Donald Trump in a televised interview discussing the summit with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

The White House backtrack came just before the Senate voted overwhelmingly against the idea.

"Look, we've been doing it in other peoples' elections", Ash said, contending that President Barack Obama tried to interfere in Israel's 2015 elections.

"People who thought they were safely under the protection of foreign governments when they committed crimes against America sometimes later find themselves in federal prisons", he said.

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