summit meeting between President Trump and Russian President Putin finally happened today in Helsinki with no American officials in attendance as observers or notetakers, only interpreters. The interpreter for the USG side is Marina Gross.
After a whole morning trapped in the vomitorium, we finally surfaced for air and some coffee. That joint press conference frankly was more bonkers than the SBC show we watched last night. After picking up our jaw from the floor, we saw that the Department of Justice this morning also unsealed a criminal complaint in the District of Columbia charging Maria Butina, a Russian national residing in Washington, D.C. with conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian Federation within the United States.
I’m still sick to my stomach. We’ll remember this Helsinki moment in the future.
Lavrov, asked how the summit went, responds:
"Fabulous…better than super." https://t.co/Ah7IbiWit0
— Anton Troianovski (@antontroian) July 16, 2018
Trump and Putin entered their one-on-one meeting two hours ago. It was scheduled to last 1.5 hours but is still ongoing,a Finnish official says. There are no other advisers or note-takers in the room, other than two interpreters. pic.twitter.com/ur9YIqKg6A
— Jeff Mason (@jeffmason1) July 16, 2018
Reporter to @POTUS: Just now, President Putin denied having anything to do with the election interference in 2016. Every U.S. intelligence agency has concluded that Russia did. My first question for you sir is, who do you believe? https://t.co/ayZoKGvWxk pic.twitter.com/b5ad79963g
— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 16, 2018
Trump was asked if he would, “with the whole world watching,” denounce what Russia did in 2016 and warn Putin to never do it again.
He did not. pic.twitter.com/j1GDAUGgHz
— VICE News (@vicenews) July 16, 2018
AP's @JonLemire: "Do you, does the Russian government have any compromising material on President Trump or his family?"
— Richard Hine (@richardhine) July 16, 2018
Reporter: Did you want Trump to win the election, and did you direct any officials to help him?
— TicToc by Bloomberg (@tictoc) July 16, 2018
bbc homepage pic.twitter.com/FKoeaPcOAF
— Philip Gourevitch (@PGourevitch) July 16, 2018
"I think it's a good start. A very, very good start for everybody," said Pres Trump of his one-on-one with Pres Putin. US delegation includes @SecPompeo, WH Chief of Staff John Kelly, US Amb to Russia Jon Huntsman, NSC Dir of Russian Affairs Fiona Hill, interpretor Marina Gross. pic.twitter.com/oFqhEaxIjM
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) July 16, 2018
— Mark Stone (@Stone_SkyNews) July 16, 2018
Former U.S. Ambassador to Russia William J. Burns doesn't mince his words on the Trump/Putin summit: "I think that press conference was the single most embarrassing performance by an American president on the world stage that I've ever seen." https://t.co/tQzciloNCn
— Christiane Amanpour (@camanpour) July 16, 2018
"Never before have I seen an American president consistently, repeatedly, publicly, and shockingly advance the interests of another country over those of his own government and people," writes @JamesFallows: https://t.co/3yVghW9q9K
— TheAtlanticPolitics (@TheAtlPolitics) July 16, 2018
— David Frum (@davidfrum) July 16, 2018
Brushback pitch from DNI Dan Coats saying IC had “been clear in our assessments of Russian meddling in the 2016 election & their ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy & we will continue to provide unvarnished & objective intel in support of our national sec.” pic.twitter.com/F5JaLnlpD6
— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) July 16, 2018