tv Shepard Smith Reporting FOX News July 16, 2018 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT
>> dana: that was chuck schumer making his first comments about president trump gave a press conference with president putin. tonight you'll see an interview with sean hannity and the president. thanks for joining us. i'm dana perino. here's shep. >> shepard: it's noon on the west coast. 3:00 on the east coast. 10:00 be in helsinki. president trump head his summit with vladimir putin. a reporter asked about election meddling. whether the president believes putin or american intelligence. >> people came to me, dan coats came to me and some others. they said they think it's russia. i have president putin just said it's not russia. i will say this. i don't see any reason why i would be. >> shepard: fact check. it was. the president of the united states will not say he believes his own government over president putin. the stunned reaction across
america including those in the president's own party. and chris wallace just sat down with. putin after the summit. he will join us live and tell us what happened. let's get to it. >> shameful, disgraceful, treasonous. three of the descriptions of what president trump did today in helsinki. first from the fox news deck, asked whether he believes american intelligence or the russian thug standing next to him, president trump declined to stand up for his own people and instead braced vladimir putin. the republican senator john mccain said the president's performance was disgraceful as he spoke from the same script as putin. the summit was a tragic mistake. that mr. trump abased himself before a tire rant. the former cia director john
brennan said the summit come mitts amount to high crimes and misdemeanors and the president's words are treasonous. more reaction ahead. federal investigators have charged more than two dozen russian nationals after findings from the united states intelligence community and both republican and democratic lawmakers. rather than defend them, president trump said today that he see notice reason why russia would interfere in the election and attacked hillary clinton and the dnc. an associated press reporter asked the president who do you believe? the russian president or the united states official who work for you? and asked him whether he would denounce moscow's meddling to president putin? here's how president trump responded. >> why haven't they taken the server? why was the fbi told to leave the office of the democratic national committee? i've been asking that for months
and months and tweeting it out and calling it out on social media? where is the server and what is the server saying. with that being said, all i can do is ask the question. my people came to me, dan coats came to me and some others and they said they think it's russia. i have president putin. he just said it's not russia. i'll say this. i don't see any reason why it would be but i do want to see the server. but i have -- i have confidence in both parties. i really believe that this will probably go on for a while. i don't think it can go out without finding out what happened to the server. what happened to the servers of the pakistani gentleman that worked on the dnc? where are those servers? they're missing. where are they? what happened to hillary clinton's e-mails? 33,000 e-mails gone.
just gone. i think in russian they wouldn't be gone so easily. it's a disgrace that we can't get hillary clinton's 33,000 e-mails. so i have great confidence in my intelligence people, but i will tell you that president putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial. >> shepard: there's no question, none at all, from his own employees, his own intelligence services and members of his own party, russia interfered in our 2016 election and is interfering in the democratic process right now. just last friday, justice department officials announced new charges against 12 russian agents accused of hacking the democratic national committee and the hillary clinton campaign. this as robert mueller continues to investigate moscow's interference in the election and
moscow and team trump. today president trump said there was no collusion and ended the roughly 40-minus conference after a 130 minute private meeting in which we may never have details by calling the investigation a total witch hunt. the russian president putin denied any wrong doing. he called possible collusion with the russian campaign nonsense. the summit in helsinki comes after president trump had a contention meeting with some of america's best allies during the nato summit in brussels and with theresa may. john brennan tweeting after today's performance, donald trump's press conference performance in helsinki rises to and exceeds the threshold of high crimes and misdemeanors. it was nothing short of treasonous. not only were trump's comments
imbecelic, he is wholly in the pocket of putin. republican patriots, where are you? this is what paul ryan said. >> shepard: there was more on the table for the two world leaders to discuss than election meddling. more including the civil war in syria, russia's invasion of crimea and continuing war in ukraine and its shoot-down of a
passenger jet and more. we have reaction from across america and around the globe ahead and the latest from helsinki. but first, there's breaking news now on fox news channel. the "fox news sunday" chris wallace has just interviewed the russian president after his meeting with president trump. this is the first pictures from their sit-down today. chris wallace joins us live from helsinki. what happened? >> well, it was pretty extraordinary television. i've been doing this almost half a century now. this is one of the most remarkable interviews i've ever done, particularly given the circumstances. vladimir putin coming to the russian embassy here in helsinki immediately after his summit with president trump. we sat down, we talked for about 35 minutes. first of all, on the question of the russian -- the indictment of the 12 russian military intelligence officers, he once again denied it was the russian state. i did something that i suspect
president trump did not do. i took the indictment, i had it in my hands and i talked to him about what was in it, the specific units and the gru, the military intelligence unit of russia and that these were actors of the russian state and did he want to see it. he said no, he wouldn't touch it. put it down on the table. we then argued is too strong a word but went back and forth in an intense way. this is remarkable television for a good eight to ten minutes about the allegations. at one point the russian president said let's make it clear, whoever was and he denied it was the russian state that was involved, whoever did it even if it was russian individuals what they took from the clinton campaign computers was real information, true information, not made-up information. i suggest at one point you're saying if they stole real money
from a bank, not counterfeit money it made it better? he didn't like that analogy. he said, you know, everything that was put out was actual information and talked in fact about the fact that it revealed the hacks that were disseminated show manipulation of the democratic primaries to help hillary clinton at the expense of bernie sanders and the dnc of the leadership had to step down. we went on to the subject that you've been talking about. i thought it was a rather curious news conference because president trump spent more time talking about the democratic party and the dnc server than he did talking about russia and the gru, the russian military intelligence. he made a couple points there. he said first of all, that you don't fly all the way to a summit to insult each other. that he had come to helsinki from moscow, president trump had come across the atlantic and
your trying to achieve diplomatic purposes and make some progress. he also said on this question of whether putin has something and that the russians have something compromising information about president trump, he said in terms that i don't think president trump is going to like very much. he said look, he came over here, he built buildings, ran a beauty pageant. i didn't know who he was, didn't care who he was. we have billionaires here and we don't surveil them. he denied any compromising information in terms of trying to explain why the president handled the news conference and these questions the way he did. we went over a whole range of subjects, shep. we talked about syria, we talked about nato, we talked about ukraine, we talked about the political assassinations inside russia. it runs as i say 30 to 35 minutes and it's absolutely fascinating television that gives you real insight. we engaged. we argued.
i interrupted. he scolded me. you don't want to miss it. >> shepard: chris, the president was asked directly in the news conference that followed the putin-trump meeting today, vladimir putin was asked if he had compromising information about the president. the russian leader did not answer directly. he obfuscated. he talked about how we should disregard these issues. he didn't answer no, i don't. did he for you? >> yeah, i mean, i'm trying to think if he used those words. he basically indicated that they had no interest in donald trump. they didn't have the resources to do it even if they had interest. that was not a factor in their relationship. >> shepard: what else did you find striking from the russian president? you never know what to believe from a russian president anyway. based on your interactions, what did you find striking or newsworthy? >> on a number of specific
issues, he was very interesting. we talked about nato. i presented to him the possibility because in fact in brussels, the nato leaders met to discuss the possibility of adding georgia and ukraine to the nato alliance. i said how would you view that? he said very negatively. he went on quite a tear about the nato expansion. he said, look, after the soviet union pulled out of germany, they were assured that nato wouldn't expand. he said there's been nothing but an expansion. he said he would view it as a direct threat to russia. we talked about syria and the slaughter of half a million people there, including hundreds of thousands of civilians.
he didn't deny that that had happened. he said it was in effect collateral damage. that these are the wages of war. you're trying to strike. he called the rebels in aleppo and gouda, he called them terrorists. if they're in the civilian population, some civilians will get called. and then he talked about the u.s. allied forces to destroy raqqa, which was the strong hold of isis. he said the obliteration there and the murder of civilians was much worse. one of the interesting things we talked about is how putin has changed. i interviewed him in 2005. at that time he was being called a democratic reformer. he talked at the time praising european culture and suggesting that russia might become a member of nato. i asked him what changed? how did you change?
he said i didn't change. the world changed. talked very much about how nato took advantage of the weakness of russia in the early part of the 21st century to try to weaken the country economically, militarily, encroaching on its borders and he in effect had to stand up for russia. i then said well, forget the international aspect of this. let's talk about you personally and your domestic relationship. i asked him specifically why is it that so many of your political enemies end up dead or close to it. we talk about sergei skripal, the spy that suffered the nerve agent in england. we talked about his political opponent gunned down on a bridge. we talked about a journalist that was murdered in an elevator building in her apartment building. he said it's crime. it has nothing to do with me.
as he so often does, he talked about the united states and said, you know, you have political murders in your country. look at john kennedy. look at martin luther king. look at the police violence in certain communities in the united states. so in effect he was saying who are you criticize what goes on in russia, although he denied involvement in those attacks or assassinations. it's a very full interview and i think you get a real insight into putin's personality. at a certain point, he was going on and i did what i think we would all do, you would. i interrupted him. he didn't like it. i interrupted him a couple times. i got his attention and we were off and running. >> shepard: chris wallace, his full interview will air on "special report with bret baier" at 6:00 p.m. eastern.
john roberts was in the news conference and is live now in helsinki. hi, john. >> shep, good evening to you from helsinki. the early indications are, this will cost the president dearly, this summit. he's taking it on the chin. not just from democrats, but from republicans as well. from literally every state across the nation. the president promised twice last week that he was going to have very direct with vladimir putin in asking him about meddling in the election and he told us as he left the press conference at checkers with theresa may that he was going to be very direct in telling vladimir putin that he had better not do it again. so this ambiguous, probably the lightest word you could use, this ambiguous answer about whether he believes american intelligence or vladimir putin about meddling in the election drew a very sharp response from the director of national intelligence, dan coats who in a
statement said "the role of the intelligence community is to provide the best information and fact-based assessment for the president and policy makers. we have been clear of the russian meddling and their efforts to undermine our democracy and we will continue to provide unvarnished intelligence in support of our national security", this is a man that briefs the president almost daily on intelligence matters and he's taking the president to task over what he said. just ahead of the summit, the president issued a treat that had a lot of people scratching their head saying he blames the united states for stupidity and foolishness for taking u.s.-russia relations to the lowest point ever. at the press conference, the president was asked about that, if it's the united states' fault or russian's fault. he didn't back off his tweet
much. listen here. >> the united states has been foolish. we've always been foolish. we should have had this dialogue a long time ago. a long time before i got to office. we're all to blame. i think the united states now has step forward with russia and we're getting together and we have a chance to do great things. >> diplomatically the president's strategy was, he wanted to engage putin, he didn't want to say anything to tick him off. there's a growing consensus across the land tonight that the president threw the united states under the bus. >> shepard: john roberts, live from helsinki where the bus throwing happened. coming up, more on the president's news conference with vladimir putin. we'll speak with a cyber security expert that worked in the white house under president george w. bush. she says president trump should have pressed putin harder on russian's meddling and ahead, more republican reaction coming in. i have type 2 diabetes.
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it's the ultimate wifi experience. xfinity xfi, simple, easy, awesome. >> shepard: breaking news. a russian woman has just been charged with unfiltrating the united states political organizations. investigators say a senior kremlin official says he was directed to do so. what is a senior kremlin official? there's only one senior kremlin official. that's vladimir putin. this woman's name is maria betuna. here's what it said in section 17 laying the ground work in russia. quoting here, "during the course of her work as a covert russian agent, she regularly meet and communicated with a u.s. person
to plan and develop the contours of the influence operation. they just charged a russian human being of infiltrating a u.s. political organization. teresa peyton is here. she's the ceo of ford life security. did i say it right? >> fortilus. >> shepard: close enough. we'll do the breaking news first. maria boutina, arrested because of infiltration. could that mean more than one thing? >> it can. it could be the smoking gun. the other piece is there are oftentimes autonomous units that have gray area marching orders and they work autonomously. they don't have to report back in all of their movements and all of their tactics. in some records, they don't want
to because that sort of gives top cover to the senior executives, if you will. so it will be interesting to see as more comes out about this indictment who that official is, if we get to learn the identity. >> shepard: when you were chief information officer under president bush 43 and something like this happened, the president would not side with his own employees tag russian dictator. what would have been your reaction and what is it today? >> yeah, my reaction today is i really wanted to see him be more strong on cyber and intel with putin. now, there was that meeting behind closed doors that none of us are privy to, the details of that. perhaps behind closed doors he was as strong as i hoped he would be. but we really do need to have a frank conversation with russian about what happened. we know not just russia, they're not the only one using this playbook. political espionage is as old as
the sands of time. here's the thing. the scale, the speed and the low expense and the low risk to do the espionage the way they're doing it using cyber means to do it is unprecedented. we know from the internet freedom report from 2017 that 18 countries had their election process manipulated in some way using social media, using cyber and intel methods not just by russia, other countries. but russia took the playbook to a level that no other country has taken it. >> shepard: and there's not been a cabinet level meeting, no operation underway about which we have knowledge to try to counter the russians as they continue the meddling. is that surprising? >> it is surprising. i ask that both sides of the aisle come together on this. we cannot politicize this issue. this is a threat to the election
process, not just in the united states, around the world. there's accusations about meddling and the post brexit vote. the intelligence community has shared with us compelling evidence that shade russia was committing political espionage again. political espionage has been around for hundreds of years. what we saw at this scale and which we saw it, the methods used, the ones that we don't know about yet. we have to have a serious discussion that said how will we develop counter measures. not only for the things we know but we need to be talking about the impossible and the improbable. what those scenarios were and we need to protect our election process. this isn't just about the voting booth. this is about social sentiment and basically that political espionage aspect. >> shepard: teresa peyton,
thanks so much. the russian woman who has just been charged with infiltrating a united states is political organization and investigators say a key kremlin official directed her to to so. jennifer griffin live with more. >> shepard, we're learning more about maria boutina who appeared in court tomorrow. the indictment from the justice department talks about how she was operating and working always a russian spy here in washington d.c. just as some background, she seems to have had connections to the trump campaign. there are reports that she worked with a former republican activist, paul ericson and was seen at a dupont circle restaurant cafe deluxe shortly after the election in 2016. on november 12, there was a birthday party and she was
dressed up. it was a costume party. she has bragged while being a graduate student at american university here in washington d.c., bragged about her connections to the kremlin and russia's central bank. it appears the justice department has brought this indictment against her as a russian spy. she also had connections to the nra, the national rifle association. she had presented herself as a leading gun rights activist from russia and had made her way into nra circles. shard? >> shepard: jennifer griffin with the breaking news. more on that story as it develops. more reago from capitol hill after the summit and the news conference that followed. several republican lawmakers are now slamming the president of their own party after what
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>> shepard: rand paul of kentucky provided some of the only praise we've seen so far on the president's news conference today. he quoted the president and said, he agrees, he would rather take a political risk in pursuit of peace than to race peace in pursuit of politics. reaction poured in. mike emanuel is live on capitol hill. mike? >> shep, good afternoon.
trey gowdy was to say russia is not our friend. russia attempted to undermine the fundamentals of our democracy, impugn the reliability of the 2016 election and sow the seeds of discord among americans. the senate foreign relations bob corker says vladimir putin won the day. >> i think he gained a lot. there's nothing that he gained. it's almost an approval, if you will, a public approval by the greatest nation on earth towards him. so he knows he gained a lot. i would guess he's having caviar right now. >> and ed royce out with a statement saying he disagrees with the president, too. there's no way you can compare the actions of the united states with vladimir putin, shep. >> shepard: mike emanuel live for us. thank you. during the build-up to today's meeting, president trump set the tone by saying the news media is the enemy of the people and
blamed the united states for russian aggression. today's russia's foreign ministry retweeted the president. the russian foreign ministry said this. we agree apartment the president tweeted "our relationship with russia has never been worse thanks to foolishness and stupidity and now the rigged witch hunt." let's bring in james jeffery, former deputy security adviser to george w. bush. he served as ambassador to turkey, iraq and albania. he's a distinguished fellow at the washington institute which bills itself as a foreign policy think tank in washington d.c. good to be here. thank you. your reaction. >> first of all, i was ininvolved in many of these "mistakes." we did some things wrong in the 90s and the last decades with russia but we were trying to
reach out to russia with way we reached out to china. the russians particularly vladimir putin as prime minister and as president did not want to extend that hand our to return that hand. so most of the responsibility is on putin. but to be sure, both sides made mistakes. the important thing is there, there i think president trump did get that part right. it is important to talk to the russians and it is important to build up a coalition to deal with among other things china and some of the other threats that we have. so far so good. but what comes out of today, this is particularly worrisome because of everything we've heard -- >> shepard: what is worrisome? >> okay. i know how putin talks about things and the important policy issues. nuclear weapons, crimea, ukraine, syria. there's no indication that trump gave any ground that he made any concessions or putin is happier than than he was yesterday.
the problem is that putin saw trump as endorsing his view or claim that he had nothing to do with the hacking of the democratic national committee and the interference of the u.s. election. that is wrong. most americans are going to think that that is wrong and that's a problem for the president. >> shepard: he just tweeted, the president second ago, as i said today in many times before, i have great confidence in my intelligence people. however, i also recognize that in order to build a bright future, we cannot exclusively focus on the past. as the world's two largest nuclear powers, we must get along. #helsinki2018. how were our interested served today? >> if the president said in his press interview what he just said in the tweet and gone on to the next question, we wouldn't be having this conversation. instead, he essentially attacked the belief or the reality that russia was involved in this and that has raised all of these
questions to either cooperate with russia, to compete with russia, to have a conflict with russia, you need the american people behind you. as you're reporting today, he doesn't have that that at this point and he's got to fix that. i think the tweet is a step in the right direction. he's trying to say i'm trying to move forward. forget about the past. but that means he has to leave the past alone when he answers questions and he didn't and he will dig himself out a long time. >> shepard: thanks, ambassador. >> thank you. >> shepard: more ahead with the meeting with the russian leading, the arrest of a russian nash name for espionage, trying to infiltrate the united states political organization. i'll speak to a foreign policy analyst who called the president's comments on russian interference indefensible. he will explain why. and later this afternoon on fox news channel, chris wallace, the host of "fox news sunday" has sat down with the russian leader, vladimir putin in his
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things that he had done wrong. but contrast, in helsinki today, i thought president trump made a big mistake. he seemed to essentially condone or at least whitewash what the russians had done in the 2016 electi election. doesn't take away that president trump won that election. maybe we need to keep saying that so he doesn't get so paranoid that his legitimacy is being taken away. our country's sovereignty is at risk for future elections regardless what we think about 2016. mr. trump cannot whitewash that russian behavior. singapore, things up. helsinki, thumbs down. >> shepard: chuck schumer will wonder if the only explanation for this dangerous behavior is if vladimir putin holds dangerous information over president trump. when asked today, president putin did not answer directly.
your level of concern on that matter. >> my thinking, president putin doesn't have such information. but the president views this as an attack on whether he really won in 2016. let me say clearly as somebody that supported hillary, i think trump win. and i think trump won that putin was rooting for him. that doesn't change the election. my interpretation of the president's attitude, when he hears a debate about 2016, he takes it as people challenging his right to be in the white house. that's where he has to actually be more confident. recognize he's there and it's not going to be taken away from him. we have to make sure the next elections are much more hardened about possible infiltrations by a foreign actor that does us no good and serious harm. >> shepard: thanks, michael.
michael will be with us top of the hour, seconds after this program ends. we'll begin the new fox news update on facebook watch, which i'll host every week day after at 4:00 eastern. that's daily from fox news channel. there's no escaping the russian president's past. a former soviet spy who faced accusation after accusation of targeting political opponents and journalists. vladimir putin is accused of murdering journalists that spoke out about him and accused of being part of the shoot down of the malaysia airline jets that killed 300. he accused of orchestrating the killing of former russian agents in great britain. we'll speak with a man that has covered the russian leader for decades next.
>> shepard: one topic that did not comp in helsinki, the russian president's past. as ben sasse of nebraska put it and i quote, "putin is a murderer. he's used outlawed chemical weapons to murder and he overseas units that shot down malaysian airlines flight 17 and murdered almost 300 civilians." let's grow to michael gorden from the "wall street journal." the journal and fox news channel and their parent company share common ownership. he was in moscow as the bureau chief from "the new york times" from 1996 to 2000. good to see you. >> good to be here. >> shepard: his past was absent today but do you bring that up
at a summit? >> i don't know if it would be appropriate for president trump to raise it in a public context but you're dealing with an individual that really sees relations with washington as a zero-sum game. he's skilled and practiced in using the the language of arms control and he talks about the end of the cold war. inside, it's a cold person who is putting his own national interests first at the expense of others. >> shepard: is that what he did today? how would you categorize the news conference? >> he tried to put the best face on what the american intelligence community believes was pretty brazen attempt by the russian government to influence the american election. none of this means that there aren't areas where the two sides can't do business. during the cold war, the united states had arms control agreement with the soviet union. so there are possible areas of convergence on arms control, possibly maybe on syria.
apparently not on ukraine. that's what also happened today. >> shepard: when the russian president lied to our president's face about the meddling in the united states elections and otherwise and the president of the united states didn't confront him on that matter, is that a matter of diplomacy or an error? >> well, the thing i thought that was more unusual is when president putin suggest that he would send his own intelligence operatives to the united states to participate in a joint investigation with the american experts unmasked what the russians did. so the idea that president trump applauded that is an interesting idea. i thought it was definitely unusual. >> shepard: unusual in that it is counter productive or why would you say that?
>> first of all, it's highly unlikely it's going to happen. he didn't act -- president trump didn't merely -- he refrained from confronting president putin directly. you can say that with diplomacy. but he endorsed an idea that putin put forth to try to resolve this controversy on russian terms. i don't know if it's sincere or putin's part. he's too wiley and skilled to think that the united states would actually take him up on that offer. it's one he put forth as his information campaign really. >> shepard: michael gordon, the national security correspondent for the wall stre"wall street ." thanks. >> thank you. >> shepard: a reminder, chris wallace's sit down interview airs at 6:00 eastern time, 5:00 central. two hours from now on "special report" with bret baier. we help you're with brett and chris tonight. should news break out, we'll
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>> during today's meeting i addressed the issue of russian interference in our elections. spent a great deal of time talking about it. >> can you name a single fact that would prove the collusion, that is out of nonsense? >> i have great confidence in my intelligence people. but i will tell you that president putin was strong and powerful in his denial today. >> neil: so the president making clear that on the russian interference matter following the summit with vladimir putin, that he trusts putin and not the data and intelligence