DONALD Trump said he might not call in the FBI if a foreign government offered to dish the dirt on his 2020 election rivals.
The US president made his claims despite the investigation into his campaign’s alleged contacts with Russia during his 2016 campaign.
Asked by George Stephanopoulos on ABC whether his campaign would accept such information or hand it to the Feds, Trump said: “I think maybe you do both.”
“I think you might want to listen, there isn’t anything wrong with listening,” Trump continued.
“If somebody called from a country, Norway, (and said) ‘we have information on your opponent‘ – oh, I think I’d want to hear it.”
“It’s not an interference, they have information – I think I’d take it,” Trump said.
“If I thought there was something wrong, I’d go maybe to the FBI – if I thought there was something wrong.
“But when somebody comes up with oppo research, right, they come up with oppo research.
What the Mueller report revealed
The report was the result of a 22-month investigation by former FBI director Robert Mueller
Sarah Sanders fake news
White House press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders had no basis for suggesting FBI officials had lost faith in then-director James Comey at the time of his firing, as she’d claimed.
After Donald Trump fired Comey in May 2017, Sanders told reporters that she had personally heard from “countless members” within the agency who were happy with the president’s decision.
Hope Hicks hung up on Putin
Campaign press secretary Hope Hicks received a call from an unknown Russian man shortly after Trump’s victory on election night.
She had difficulty understanding the foreign accent, but made out the words “Putin call”.
Hicks told the caller to send her an email and the following morning she received a message with the subject line “Message from Putin”.
Trump says ‘I’m F***ed’
Trump feared the Russia probe would end his presidency and declared “I’m f***ed” when he was first told about Robert Mueller’s investigation, the report says.
President tried to get Mueller fire – twice
The report says Trump instructed White House lawyer Don McGahn to remove Muller from the probe.
According to the report, Trump twice asked McGhan to fire the investigator telling him “Mueller has to go” adding “call me back when you do it.”
Aides ignore Trump’s orders to interfere
Trump made several attempts to get the people around him to curtail the probe into his campaign and Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
The Mueller report found that Trump’s inner circle saved him from himself as they refused to carry out orders that could have crossed the line into obstructing justice
Sessions carried a resignation letter
Sessions, fearful of his tense relationship with Trump, carried a resignation letter with him every time he visited the White House for months.
Why Mueller didn’t interview Trump
The Mueller report lays out why the special counsel’s office did not interview Trump as part of the investigation.
The two sides spent “more than a year” negotiating the conditions under which the president could answer questions, but in the end only submitted answers to written inquiries.
In the end, Mr Mueller decided not to subpoena Mr Trump because it would take too long — not because there was any legal impediment.
“The FBI doesn’t have enough agents to take care of it. When you go and talk, honestly, to congressman, they all do it, they always have, and that’s the way it is. It’s called oppo research.”
Trump’s comments came a month after he pledged not to use information stolen by foreign adversaries in his 2020 re-election campaign.
During a question-and-answer session with reporters in the Oval Office in May, Trump said he “would certainly agree to” that commitment.
“I don’t need it. All I need is the opponents that I’m looking at,” he said.
Trump also insisted that he “never did use, as you probably know,” such information, adding: “That’s what the Mueller report was all about. They said no collusion.”
MOST READ IN NEWS
The role of Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., in organising a 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer offering negative information on Hillary Clinton was a focus of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe of Russian meddling in the last presidential campaign.
FBI Director Christopher Wray told lawmakers that Trump Jr. should have called his agency to report the offer.
But Trump, who nominated Wray to the role in 2017, told ABC News that he disagrees. “The FBI director is wrong,” the president said. He added, “Life doesn’t work like that.”