CNN’s Anderson Cooper denounced President Trump’s performance at a news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin as one of the most “disgraceful” he has ever seen.
“You have been watching perhaps one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president at a summit in front of a Russian leader, that I have ever seen,” Cooper said on-air after Trump and Putin concluded their joint news conference.
"You have been watching perhaps one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president at a summit in front of a Russian leader certainly than I've ever seen." – Anderson Cooper on Trump-Putin summit pic.twitter.com/xHbmAZl0y3
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) July 16, 2018
Both leaders addressed the issue of Russia’s election meddling during the press conference, with Putin denying that Russia interfered in the U.S. election and Trump contradicting the conclusions of his own intelligence agencies.
“I had to reiterate things I said several times, including during our personal contacts, that the Russian state has never interfered and is not going to interfere into internal American affairs including election process,” Putin said.
“The probe is a disaster for our country,” Trump said about special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe. “I think it’s kept us separated. There was no collusion at all. Everybody knows it.”
Asked directly if he believed Putin or his own intelligence community, which concluded that the Russians were behind the hacking and other interference, the president cast doubt on the cyber-attack and ripped US investigations into Russia while standing beside the Russian leader.
“So let me just say that we have two thoughts. You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server, why haven’t they taken the server. Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the Democratic National Committee. I’ve been wondering that. I’ve been asking that for months and months and I’ve been tweeting it out and calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I want to know where is the server and what is the server saying?” he said as Putin stood just several feet away during a joint press conference in Helsinki.
“What happened to Hillary Clinton’s e-mails, 33,000 e-mails gone, just gone. I think in Russia, they wouldn’t be gone so easily. I think it’s a disgrace that we can’t get Hillary Clinton’s 33,000 e-mails.”
“My people came to me, [Director of National Intelligence] Dan Coats came to me, some others, they said they think it’s Russia. I have President Putin. He just said it’s not Russia. I will say this, I don’t see any reason why it would be,” he added.
Trump: "My people came to me, [Director of National Intelligence] Dan Coats came to me, some others, they said they think it's Russia. I have President Putin. He just said it's not Russia. I will say this, I don't see any reason why it would be." pic.twitter.com/p6kfkGw5pC
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) July 16, 2018