"I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today", Trump said.
POTUS is facing serious backlash for not only praising his controversial counterpart, but initially believing the Russian leader when he said that Russia had not meddled in the 2016 USA election-this despite the fact that US intelligence agencies had indicted 12 Russian agents for the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign just days prior. And then, because he apparently couldn't help himself, "Could be other people also. A lot of people out there", the president said. "There was no collusion at all".
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters that Russian Federation was not a friend of the United States and warned against a repeat of the 2016 election meddling.
That NATO reference carried an edge, too, since the barrage of criticism and insults he delivered in Brussels in London was hardly well-received. Regularly referenced by the media, TMZ is one of the most cited entertainment news sources in the world. "Sadly, it is not being reported that way - the Fake News is going insane!"
But faced with outrage at home, with even some of his political allies demanding that he reverse course, Mr. Trump - in an extraordinary postscript to the summit - sought to walk back his remarks. "Shameful", "disgraceful", "weak", were a few of the comments.
It was all presented as a larger-than-usual but otherwise ordinary display of Trumpiness, just another round of the gauche public theater that the USA president regularly employs to play to his political base. Bob Corker of Tennessee.
"We just conducted a year-long investigation into Russia's interference in our elections".
But the bipartisan consensus has been broadly hostile to Trump's stance - as the top Republican in Congress, House Speaker Paul Ryan made clear once more at a press conference Tuesday on Capitol Hill. "And make sure Trump doesn't get away with this".
Trump, who spent more than two hours with the Kremlin leader behind closed doors, also tweeted Tuesday that his summit went "even better" than his meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation leaders in Brussels last week.
Other GOP senators pushed back on the idea that Russian Federation is no longer targeting the U.S. Senate intelligence committee Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., when asked whether there was any doubt that Russian Federation was still targeting upcoming U.S. elections, responded "none", adding Trump "ought to look at the intelligence".
But minority Democrats have few tools to push their priorities.
China vows to 'fight back' after USA threaten $200bn tariffs on goods
Beijing has vowed to "fight back as usual" after Donald Trump's tit-for-tat trade war with China escalated once again last night. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch called it "reckless", adding that the tariffs were "not a targeted approach".
Trump also said he meant to say in Helsinki he saw no reason why Russian Federation would not have interfered in the 2016 US election. John Cornyn of Texas, said sanctions may be preferable to a nonbinding resolution that amounts to "just some messaging exercise".
Putin and Trump sat down in Helsinki for a historic meeting in which they held four hours of talks between Moscow and Washington.
In addition, the president went much further than he had when he was standing right next to Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier this week, telling CBS that Putin was personally responsible for the election interference "because he's in charge of the country".
"In a key sentence in my remarks I said the word "would" instead of "wouldn't".
"He just said it's not Russian Federation". "The sentence should have been, 'I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russia.' Sort of a double negative", he added - repeating the laborious clarification several times. That's the part he corrected on Tuesday.
Trump declined to endorse the United States government's assessment that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 USA presidential election, instead publicly embracing Putin's "extremely strong and powerful" denial.
Trump, the first lady, Shine and Miller were seen in animated conversation aboard Marine One when they arrived to the White House South Lawn on Monday evening.
Trump stunned the world on Monday by shying away from criticizing the Russian leader for Moscow's actions to undermine the 2016 presidential election, sparking bipartisan fury at home and prompting calls by some USA lawmakers for tougher sanctions and other actions to punish Russia.
Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has given a series of interviews supporting Trump's stance towards Putin, and berating his critics as biased against the president. Anthony Scaramucci, who was White House communications director for 11 days, told CNN on Tuesday that the president should try to clarify his remarks "immediately". Trump appeared to respond: "Thank you. No". But the USA president found precious little support for his decision not to confront the Russian leader - on either side of the political aisle.
Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer said Trump's tweets on Wednesday showed he was not committed to accepting the findings of intelligence agencies, and his Tuesday comments were merely damage control. "Isn't it natural to feel sympathy to a person who wanted to develop relations with our country?"