From the Left



It's past time to hear from the president himself

Ruth Marcus on

WASHINGTON -- It's been more than a year since Donald Trump held his one and only full-fledged news conference as president. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders emerges occasionally to not-answer questions, but it is past time to hear from the president himself. Here is a partial list of questions:

Mr. President, you said the Mueller indictment shows there was no collusion. But the indictment alleges that Russia intervened with the intent of helping you get elected. Do you agree with that assessment? What is your basis for saying Russia's actions had no effect on the outcome?

You said last November about Russian President Vladimir Putin: "Every time he sees me he says, 'I didn't do that,' and I really believe that when he tells me that, he means it." Is that still your position? If so, why do you believe Putin? Why did you believe him previously?

Please outline what steps you have taken to prevent Russia from repeating in 2018 or 2020 what it did in 2016. What meetings have you held on this subject with your intelligence chiefs or national security council?

Last year, you tried to convince Congress not to enact new sanctions on Russia over its election interference. Recently, you declined to identify new targets of sanctions. In light of the Mueller indictment, what do you say to critics who believe you have been too soft on Russia?

In the aftermath of the most recent indictments, you expressed anger at various people and institutions -- the FBI, Democrats and President Obama, among others. But you do not seem angry at Russia -- at least judging from your public statements. Can you explain?

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Last weekend you tweeted that "the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter" and suggested this was because "they are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign." Do you really believe the two are related? How would you feel about that tweet if you were one of the victims' parents?

Given the latest indictments, would you still describe the Mueller investigation as "the single greatest witch hunt in American history"? Why?

When did you become aware that former national security adviser Michael Flynn had spoken to former Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak about lifting sanctions? When did you become aware that Flynn had lied to the FBI about those conversations? What did you do in response? Why did you describe Flynn as a "good guy" and ask FBI director James Comey to "let this go," referring to the investigation of Flynn?

Please outline what role you played in drafting your son Donald Trump Jr.'s statement about the June Trump Tower meeting? Did you say that the statement should describe the meeting as being "primarily" about adoption? What was your basis for saying that? When did you become aware of the meeting?


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