Maine's Congressional Delegation Is Critical Of Trump's Summit Comments

President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin speak to the media during a joint press conference after their summit on Monday in Helsinki

In this case, Trump sided with his Russian counterpart by openly questioning his own intelligence agencies' findings that Moscow was behind the 2016 USA elections. "Clearly, there have been some challenges, I hope we understand each other better now", the Russian president said.

The president met with Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Finland Monday amid growing tensions between the two countries, specifically over interference in the 2016 election.

"One of the early things he [Putin] said when we started was, "It's really a shame, because we could do so much good", Trump noted. Trump later reiterated his stance on Twitter.

It's become painfully hard to track exactly where we're at with the investigation into possible interference in the 2016 USA election by Russian Federation, given that something insane seems to happen every single day. Both actions have received widespread worldwide condemnation, including from the US.

Republican heavyweights also labelled Trump's comments "disgraceful".

"The damage inflicted by President Trump's naiveté, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is hard to calculate".

Putin spoke to Fox News after his summit Monday with Trump.

President Donald Trump defended his statements after meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday, crediting himself with diffusing tension between the two nations while praising his counterpart as "very, very strong". And he said Trump and Putin "seemed to be speaking from the same script" as Trump made a "conscious choice to defend a tyrant".

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"That is not just the finding of the American intelligence community but also the House Committee on Intelligence".

"As I have said before, Russian Federation is not our friend; Russian Federation is not an ally".

Mr Ryan is not the only powerful Republican to have criticised Mr Trump's behaviour towards Russia - Senate foreign relations chairman Bob Corker, and former House speaker Newt Gingrich are among those who have joined in.

"The president must appreciate that Russian Federation is not our ally", said Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. Key GOP lawmakers at least initially refrained from directly attacking Trump's performance, and at least one echoed the president's criticism of the special counsel probe.

Still, Trump considered the summit a bigly success, saying, "Well, I think we're doing really well with Russian Federation as of today".

"For the president of the United States to side with President Putin against American law enforcement, American defense officials, and American intelligence agencies is thoughtless, dangerous, and weak".

Senator Jeff Flake called the press conference "shameful" and Senator Lindsey Graham tweeted that it was a "bad day for the US".

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