Trey Gowdy says Russian meddling clear, Donald Trump must 'act like it'

Video: Trump on DNC Server

US President Donald Trump met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland on Monday.

So there's ample reason for journalists to try to ask again: "Is Russia still targeting the United States?"

A bare majority of Republicans in the new poll - 51 percent - approve of Trump expressing doubts about US intelligence conclusions on Russian election interference. Trump also asserted, without evidence, that his campaign had been illegally spied upon by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Trump has given lip service to this assessment, saying he accepts the intelligence community's conclusions, while acting like he does not. While he said Page was no "James Bond", the adviser had connections to the Kremlin that predated his involvement with Trump. A clearly surprised Coats, who had not been told of the invitation, laughed and said, "That's going to be special". "We are doing much better than any other country!"

Rubio also noted Trump's campaign had downplayed Page's role, so connections between Page and Russian Federation don't indicate collusion in and of themselves. "When I said this was a missed opportunity, we reinforced a narrative that's bad for us as a nation, it came across weak".

Rubio, who sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said that the administration and Congress now needs to focus on "deterring future attacks" by bad actors like Russian Federation.

He went on to say that he and the intelligence community were committed to supporting President Trump's "ongoing efforts to prevent Russian meddling in our upcoming elections".

"It was important that he [Trump] do that", Rubio told moderator Margaret Brennan.

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Six days after Trump's sit-down in Helsinki with Putin, guests on the Sunday news shows were still trying to interpret his head-scratching performance in which he sided with Putin over the United States intelligence agencies - only to walk back his comments a day later. But Trump cast doubt once again in a Sunday tweet, diminishing at least the significance, if not the existence, of the interference and the USA investigation into Russia's actions.

"They did not spy on the campaign from anything and everything that I have seen", Rubio said.

The former intelligence chief asserted that Mr Trump's statement was "nothing short of treasonous" and that he was "wholly in the pocket of Putin".

Brennan asked if the senator was "really satisfied with what has been characterized as walk back".

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said in a statement that his Thursday comments at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado were not meant to be critical of the president's handling of the summit.

After he left Helsinki, Trump reportedly grew frustrated with the negative media coverage of what he thought was a successful summit, complaining to aides there was not enough focus on the responsibility the Democratic National Committee had in the hacking of its servers.

The Helsinki conference did not go well for the US, by Rubio's assessment. "I know it's hard", Graham said. Speaking with CNBC, Trump later characterized (and distorted) the exchange as "fools from the media saying, 'Why didn't you stand there, look him in the face, walk over to him, and start shouting at him?' I said, 'Are these people insane?"

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