WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Wednesday it “seems unlikely” that he’ll have to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller about the investigation into allegations that Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 election, repeatedly insisting there was “no collusion.”
When they have no collusion…it seems unlikely that you’d even have an interview,” Trump said during a press conference at the White House in which he called the Russia investigation a “Democratic hoax.”
As far as any potential interview with Mueller, Trump left things vague, saying “certainly, we’ll see what happens” while suggesting that it might not be necessary.
There is collusion, but it’s really with the Democrats and the Russians,” Trump said, telling reporters “the witch hunt continues.”
Sources familiar with the matter previously told NBC News that Trump’s legal team was preparing for the possibility off an interview with Mueller’s team, including the possibility of written responses to questions in lieu of a formal sit-down.
Later in the press conference, Trump told reporters he thought it was “better to work with Russia” on matters of international importance — like North Korea — but said that his actions on energy development, as well as rebuilding the military, weren’t policies that would earn him any praise from the Kremlin.
(Russia President Vladimir) Putin can’t love that,” Trump said.
The Russia investigation has hovered over the administration as Trump continues to try to tackle complex domestic issues, specifically immigration reform that both addresses the legal status of those covered by an Obama-era immigration policy allowing children brought to the United States illegally as children, as well as funding for his long-promised border wall.
Any deal on immigration “has to include the wall” Trump said Wednesday, “because without the wall, it all doesn’t work.” The wall, he continued, was necessary for security, safety and stopping drugs from coming into the United States.
One day earlier Trump seemed open to a “clean” deal on the “Dreamers” issue when it was proposed by Democrats during a bipartisan meeting, but at the time was unclear as to whether or not a clean deal meant the wall in addition to a solution for that issue.