Top intelligence official says he meant no disrespect to Trump

23 July, 2018, 14:55 | Author: Malcolm Quinn
  • UNITED STATES- JULY 17 Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick R-Pa. leaves a meeting of the House Republican Conference at the Capitol Hill Club

The Florida Republican disagreed with Trump tweets that the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation misled courts and illegally spied on the president's campaign.

On Sunday's television talk shows, the closest thing to a staunch defense of Trump's meeting with Putin came from a former aide, Tom Bossert, who had been an adviser for homeland security.

Gowdy, the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, has previously backed the USA intelligence community's findings on Russian Federation and actions taken by the FBI in its investigations of the matter.

Republican US Senators Marco Rubio (L) and Lindsey Graham are seen in this combination photo from US Senate hearings on Capitol Hill in Washington, US on March 14, 2018 and on June 18, 2018 respectively. By contrast, 80 percent of Democrats now say Trump has weakened USA leadership around the world.

Thursday marked the third day of Mr Trump trying to manage the political fallout from his widely criticised performance at the summit meeting with Mr Putin in Finland.

Earlier in the week, Coats had also seemed to distance himself from the White House when he issued a statement reaffirming the intelligence agencies' unanimous conclusion that Russian Federation had interfered in the 2016 election and that one of Putin's goals was to help Trump's campaign.

"I have a different view on this issue than the president and the White House", Rubio said Sunday on CBS' "Face the Nation".

Trump's tweets on Thursday come as he has alternated between trying to quell a political uproar over his comments in Helsinki - he refused to back the U.S. intelligence community's assessment of Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election during a joint news conference with Putin, instead touting Putin's strong denials - and his desire to not back down or apologize over his performance. That, he said, boded ill for another meeting with the Russian leader.

Then following surprised laughter, Mr Coats said: "Okay, that's going to be special". "To me, that's beyond comprehension".


But another US official called those accusations unfair and said Coats would never try to undercut or embarrass the president.

"I think he should've been stronger, standing up for the fact that Putin has interfered in the past, is still doing it in the future". Of those surveyed, 40% think that Trump went too far in his support, 15% said he didn't go far enough, and 35% found the support for Putin was about right.

"Just have sanctions that can fall on Russian Federation like a hammer", Graham said on CBS' "Face the Nation".

"Do you meet with this guy from a position of weakness?" said Graham, as if directly addressing Trump about the Russian leader.

Under pressure from Congress, which past year passed a tough sanctions law targeting Russia, the US Treasury in April imposed sanctions on Russian officials and oligarchs for election meddling and "malign" activities.

"The sentence should have been: I don't see any reason why I wouldn't - or why it wouldn't be Russian Federation", the president said Tuesday before a meeting with Republican members of Congress.

But another Republican, Sen.

In a 2013 letter, Page had described himself as an "informal adviser' to the Kremlin but now said "it's really spin" to call him an adviser".

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