Trump Ignores Advisers, Congratulates Putin on Election 'Win'

Putin wants to cause trouble wherever he can, UK's Johnson says

I am unconvinced by Clara Holzer's claim that US President Donald Trump is "correct to say that we should wait for the facts before commenting" on the United Kingdom spy poisoning.

"And I think that is probably the reason why it was chose to make this gesture here in this country", he said.

The call was the latest indicator of Trump's personal reluctance to publicly criticize Putin.

Trump told reporters, "We had a very good call, and I suspect that we'll probably be meeting in the not-too-distant future to discuss the arms race, which is getting out of control".

"Especially when you've ... got major nuclear treaties between us and that kind of thing", Corker said Tuesday.

The tempest over President Donald Trump's congratulatory phone call to Vladimir Putin quickly grew on Wednesday into an uproar over White House leaks, sparking an internal investigation and speculation over who might be the next person Trump forces out of the West Wing.

"A White House official, furious about the WaPo story: "This is the way Trump is".

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The US president's briefing materials also had the words "DO NOT CONGRATULATE" in capital letters but Mr Trump instead did just that to Mr Putin over his election victory.

It was not clear whether Trump read the notes, administration officials said.

Trump added that former President George W. Bush did not have the "smarts" to get along with Russian Federation, and former President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tried but did not have the chemistry or energy. Former President Barack Obama called the Russian leader in 2012 and, according to a White House readout, congratulated him on winning his last re-election campaign. "They are wrong! Getting along with Russian Federation (and others) is a good thing, not a bad thing", Trump said via Twitter.

Putin was re-elected Russian president for the fourth time in a landslide victory on Sunday, garnering more than 76 percent of the vote. Others offered more muted responses.

"Mr. President, please accept my honest congratulations for your victory in yesterday's elections", Netanyahu wrote in a letter sent to Putin, the Prime Minister's Office said. Though the reaction has been described as "rattled", a White House official said it is more like anger and disappointment.

The furor in the White House over the leak broke out even as Nielsen, Trump's top domestic security official, sounded a fresh warning about the threat posed by Russian Federation.

Trump's outreach comes as Special Counsel Robert Mueller and multiple congressional committees investigate Russia's interference in the 2016 US presidential election, as well as ties between Trump's campaign and Moscow.

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