Trump Lashes Out at U.S. Officials, Disputes Claim He Trusts Putin Over U.S. Intelligence

President Donald Trump lashed out at government officials and disputed claims that he trusts Russian leader Vladimir Putin over United States intelligence agencies.

John Bolton, one of the dumbest people I’ve met in government and sadly, I’ve met plenty, states often that I respected, and even trusted, Vladimir Putin of Russia more than those in our Intelligence Agencies,” Trump said of his former national security adviser.

While of course that is not true,” he continued, “if the first people you met from so called American Intelligence were Dirty Cops who have now proven to be sleazebags at the highest level like James Comey, proven liar James Clapper, & perhaps the lowest of them all, Wacko John Brennan who headed the CIA, you could perhaps understand my reluctance to embrace!” 

The president’s tweet comes amid reports that he would like to invite Putin to the next G7 meeting of world leaders, despite opposition to Russia’s inclusion. The G7 comprises Germany, France, the UK, Italy, Japan, Canada, and the United States. The group used to be the G8, but Russia’s membership was suspended in 2014 due to its annexation of Crimea.

I don’t know but we have invited a number of people to the meeting. I certainly would invite him to the meeting,” Trump replied when asked if he would invite Putin.

The president’s often deferential relationship with Putin has perturbed the international community even before a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) assessment revealed Russia intentionally interfered in the 2016 presidential election. Trump has continuously dismissed the assessment from U.S. intelligence that it was confident that Russia was behind the hacks. He has suggested that the conclusion was politically motivated, a claim he has repeated even as investigations into Russia’s subversion continue.