Meeting With Putin "Even Better" Than With NATO, Says Trump

US President Donald Trump and Russia's President Vladimir Putin at a joint press conference at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki

US President Donald Trump and Russia's President Vladimir Putin at a joint press conference at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki

He calls it "Trump derangement syndrome". "But no, it would never occur to anyone that he would think of running for president", he said.

Trump also declined to challenge Putin's insistence that his country did not meddle in the 2016 USA presidential election, even though US intelligence agencies under two administrations and the Republican-controlled Senate Intelligence Committee concluded that Moscow sought to skew the election toward Trump.

The Kentucky Republican told reporters at the Capitol on Monday: "The Russians are not our friends".

Trump's statement was an open challenge to the conclusion of his own intelligence agencies, which insisted that Moscow played a role of intervention in the general elections.

"President Trump missed the mark today in failing to confront Vladimir Putin on these realities", Fitzpatrick said.

"They have no information on Trump", POTUS beamed, of Putin's press conference claim.

Trump wanted to give presser credit where it was due, modestly turning talk to Putin's remarks about Trump.

Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said on Twitter he did not agree with Trump on his remarks on the controversy over Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election. But since a President Bubbles is unfortunately not likely to happen soon, the comedian took the liberty of repurposing an old Sesame Street video for Trump to use the next time he forgets the difference between "would" and "wouldn't".

The Arizona Republican says the summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki was "a tragic mistake".

Trump's embrace of Putin came on the last day of a weeklong European trip in which he berated North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies over their defense spending and undercut British Prime Minister Theresa May in the tabloids.

"Zero collusion", Trump said.

McCain, who has been away from the Senate as he battles brain cancer, said the damage inflicted by Trump's "naiveté, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is hard to calculate".

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In a move not cleared by the White House, the top intelligence official in the United States has refuted President Donald Trump's remarks in Helsinki - unequivocally affirming that the Russian government did act to interfere in the 2016 US presidential election. Putin, earlier in the day, described those rumors as "nonsense". As a former FBI Special Agent, I support our Intelligence Community, and I stand by their conclusions. His guess was First Lady Melania Trump since "she hates him the most".

"President Putin says it's not Russian Federation".

The news conference, televised on the nation's biggest broadcast and cable news networks, drew strong reaction from commentators after it was over.

"I don't know, have you ever seen the lights go out on a president before?"

The CNN anchor said Trump was like "Rain Man" in the way he returns to the subject of Hillary Clinton's email server.

"A single, ominous question now hangs over the White House: what could possibly cause President Trump to put the interests of Russian Federation over those of the United States".

Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan said there was no doubt Russian Federation had meddled in United States elections and that Mr Putin "does not share our values". He adds: "The president must appreciate that Russian Federation is not our ally". The United States does not have an extradition treaty with Russia, making it uncertain that the indicted Russian officers - who are not now in custody - will ever be prosecuted in an American courtroom.

"I don't want to insult President Trump when I say this - and I may come as rude - but before he announced that he will run for presidency, he was of no interest for us", Putin said.

Congress almost unanimously passed a sanctions law a year ago targeting Moscow for election meddling and for its actions in Ukraine and Syria.

The Senate's top Democrat is accusing President Donald Trump of a "shameful performance" at a news conference alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin. "It's nothing to be proud of for American democracy".

The US president was also asked whether he held Russian Federation accountable on any particular issue.

Aside from questions over the election, the United States and Russia remain far apart on major issues, such as the Syria conflict, Russia's annexation of Crimea, and the USA backing for the UK over the poisoning of a former Russian spy.

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