Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

White House refuses to comment on Mueller probe claims


President Donald Trump on Wednesday appeared to back off a commitment to meet investigators looking into Russia's role in the 2016 United States election, saying an interview was "unlikely" to take place.

Trump also shared via Twitter a video clip of a joint news conference he held with Solberg on Wednesday afternoon.

"We need the wall for security, we need the wall for safety, we need the wall for stopping the drugs from pouring in", Trump said Wednesday.

Trump has long derided the investigations into possible collusion, slamming the inquiries as nothing more than a "witch hunt" and complaining about Republicans who are going along with the congressional investigations. "I think it was a very Norwegian election with Norwegian participants", she added.

Trump's attorneys were said to have asked whether it could be in the written format.

Mueller's office obtained a guilty plea from Flynn for lying to the FBI about contacts with the US ambassador to Russian Federation, and the former Trump aide is now cooperating with the investigation. The others' expertise is mainly in a variety of white-collar crimes, including fraud, money laundering and public corruption, though Mueller also has appellate specialists and one of the government's foremost experts in criminal law. "Or would you demand that a strict set of parameters be placed around any encounter between you and the special counsel?"

It's true that Mueller's probe hasn't yet turned up any evidence of collusion between Trump's campaign and the Russian government, or at least hasn't released any such evidence publicly.

"And, you know, you can talk all you want about Russian Federation, which was all a - you know, fake news, fabricated deal - to try and make up for the loss of the Democrats and the press plays right into it", said Trump. Everybody knows it. Every committee - I've been in office now for 11 months.

Trump called the investigation a "phony cloud" over his administration.

"All I see of these Democrats, like Adam Schiff - it's all he does, he'll have a meeting, and then he'll leave, and he'll call up the meeting, and then I'll have a meeting and then he'll leave".

Pence was named Trump's running mate in July 2016 and was the head of the Trump transition after the election.

Pressed again, Trump crossed his arms and said: "When they have no collusion and nobody has found any collusion at any level, it seems unlikely that you'd even have an interview".

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