Trump also says, "I have great confidence in my intelligence people but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today."
July 17, 2018 -- The day after his press conference with Putin, in a meeting with members of Congress, Trump says he meant to say, "I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russia." Trump adds that he has "full faith and support for America's great intelligence agencies" and that, "I have felt very strongly that, while Russia's actions had no impact at all on the outcome of the election, let me be totally clear in saying that -- and I've said this many times -- I accept our intelligence community's conclusion that Russia's meddling in the 2016 election took place. Could be other people also; there's a lot of people out there."
July 22, 2018 -- Just a few days after thanking Fox News for showing clips he says demonstrate he has recognized Russian meddling many times, Trump tweets that the investigation is "all a big hoax."
So President Obama knew about Russia before the Election. Why didn't he do something about it? Why didn't he tell our campaign? Because it is all a big hoax, that's why, and he thought Crooked Hillary was going to win!!!
-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 22, 2018
In a press conference on July 23, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump's "hoax" comment was "referencing the collusion component," not the Russia investigation in general. Said Sanders: "As the President has said many times, and stated over and over again -- as have I, as have a number of other administration officials -- we maintain that Russia interfered in the elections. The President, however, very much so, and has repeatedly -- as, again, have the rest of us -- that his campaign colluding in that process is a total hoax."