Published: Tue, July 17, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Praise for Putin, pity for Trump

Praise for Putin, pity for Trump

Former Vice President Joe Biden said Trump's news conference with Putin was "beneath the dignity" of his office.

The wave of criticism from Trump's own party was so overwhelming that the White House announced late on July 16 that Trump would be meeting the next day with lawmakers.

Stephen Colbert devoted his opening monologue to President Donald Trump's Helsinki presser with Vladimir Putin - a performance "so weird, so disturbing it's really upset people across the partisan divide in ways I have not seen in years", Colbert said. I think we all know the answer to that one.

Trump said in a tweet aboard Air Force One on his way back home.

"I mean, you stood there like a little wet noodle, like a little fanboy", Schwarzenegger said.

U.S. Sen. Jim Risch's comments joined a flood of reactions to Monday's two-hour, one-on-one meeting between Putin and President Donald Trump in Helsinki, Finland.

His scepticism drew a quick formal statement - nearly a rebuttal - from Mr Trump's director of national intelligence, Dan Coats. Putin too has rejected the allegations.

It was, according to both Republicans and Democrats, the most embarrassing performance by an American president, ever. "The damage inflicted by President Trump's naiveté, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is hard to calculate. But it is clear that the summit in Helsinki was a tragic mistake", said Republican Senator John McCain, who chairs the powerful Senate Armed Services Committee.

House speaker and Republican Paul Ryan, who has been reluctant to criticise Mr Trump in recent months, said the president "must appreciate that Russian Federation is not our ally".

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"Heading to Helsinki, Finland - looking forward to meeting with President Putin tomorrow".

Mr Trump told the press conference that the USA and Russian Federation must find ways to "co-operate in pursuit of shared interests". "It was nothing short of treasonous". He then showed clips of reporters criticizing Trump's comments.

Mr Trump contradicted USA investigators - who believe Russian hackers interfered in the 2016 presidential election - and said there was no reason for Moscow to meddle in the vote.

Former CIA Director John Brennan on Monday ripped into President Donald Trump for meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin alone in Helsinki.

Mr. Brennan suggested the Russians do have dirt on the president.

The meeting was overshadowed in accounts from political analysts by the ongoing federal investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election, which was brought to the fore on Friday with the indictment of 12 Russians by the US Department of Justice.

On Monday, Trump also resurrected several debunked conspiracy theories about his opponent Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party, called out an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent involved in the meddling probe by name and complained about media coverage. "If the president is as confused as he seems to be in terms of our relationship [with the Russians] and in terms with what the Russians are capable of, to meet privately with Vladimir Putin is just wrong".

"Flattering dictators will not advance American interests".

Standing alongside the Kremlin boss at a joint news conference, Trump acknowledged that his intelligence chiefs believe Russian Federation hacked and leaked Democrats' emails containing politically damaging information about his rival Hillary Clinton in 2016. "Openly", wrote the Washington Post's editorial board.

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