Nancy Pelosi Slams Trump for Inviting Vladimir Putin to Washington

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

Putin's proposal would have enabled Special Counsel Robert Mueller's prosecutors to speak with Russians they've accused of hacking during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, in exchange for Russian investigators questioning U.S. officials, such as former ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul and businessman Bill Browder, who is suspected of financial misdeeds in Russia.

Similarly, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats on Thursday said he didn't know the specifics of what Trump and Putin discussed.

"We will see how things develop further", Putin said, evoking unnamed "forces" in the USA trying to prevent any improvement in relations and "putting narrow party interests above the national interest".

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats has reluctantly returned to the news spotlight amidst the fallout from the Helsinki summit
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"The Summit with Russian Federation was a great success, except with the real enemy of the people, the Fake News Media", Trump wrote. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss planning, said the talks would also cover nuclear proliferation, North Korea, Iran and Syria.

The announcement that Putin was in talks to visit Washington comes amid special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 US election, and heightened scrutiny of Trump's views on Russian relations following the Helsinki summit.

It all left White House staffers in a fresh state of resignation about their jobs. He also reiterated denials of Russian involvement in the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in Britain.

"Say that again?", he asked, as the audience laughed nervously. "That's going to be special", he said, after expressing shock at the news.


Separately, a senior administration official told Brennan that Mr. Trump is telling his team that he held a firm line with Putin regarding Syria, and said US troops will not leave until Iran leaves. He just said it's not Russian Federation. "In the United States, in Russian Federation, or anywhere else", he said in a statement. The remarks put him at odds with United States intelligence over claims of Russian interference in 2016 election.

"I have great confidence that the Russians will try and undermine western democracy in 2017, 2018, 2019 and for an awfully long time", Pompeo said in an interview with Fox News.

He last visited the White House in 2005, when he met President George W. Bush, who welcomed the Russian leader in the East Room as "my friend".

News of a second Trump-Putin summit came soon after the Senate voted unanimously to rebuke Putin's attempt to convince Trump to hand over current and former American officials for questioning - an offer Trump had previously called "incredible".


In a CNBC interview, Trump said that he and Putin had a rapport in Helsinki. Just like I consider myself to be responsible for things that happen in this country.

"President Trump asked [U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Bolton] to invite President Putin to Washington in the fall and those discussions are already underway", she tweeted.

During the news conference, Trump appeared to accept Putin's denial over the conclusion made by the USA intelligence community that Russian Federation had interfered in the 2016 United States election - a comment that he later walked back.

A Republican congressman and former Central Intelligence Agency officer, William Hurd, wrote an opinion piece in the New York Times late on Thursday entitled, "Trump is Being Manipulated by Putin". There is $380 million approved in the current budget for the program, which is meant to help states strengthen election systems from hacking and other cyberattacks.


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