Wall Street Journal editorial board rips Trump on Helsinki: It was a 'national embarrassment'
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The Wall Street Journal editorial board is slamming President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump renews attacks against Tester over VA nominee on eve of Montana rally Trump submits 2017 federal income tax returns Corker: Trump administration 'clamped down' on Saudi intel, canceled briefing MORE over his press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday, calling it a “national embarrassment.”

“Details from the private Trump-Putin talks in Helsinki will spill out in coming days, but Monday’s joint press conference was a personal and national embarrassment,” the conservative newspaper said in a scathing editorial

“On stage with the dictator whose election meddling has done so much harm to his Presidency, Mr. Trump couldn’t even bring himself to say he believed his own intelligence advisers like Dan CoatsDaniel (Dan) Ray CoatsHillicon Valley: Russia-linked hackers hit Eastern European companies | Twitter shares data on influence campaigns | Dems blast Trump over China interference claims | Saudi crisis tests Silicon Valley | Apple to let customers download their data Overnight Defense — Presented by The Embassy of the United Arab Emirates — Senators seek US intel on journalist's disappearance | Army discharged over 500 immigrant recruits in one year | Watchdog knocks admiral over handling of sexual harassment case Lawmakers seeking intel on alleged Saudi plot against journalist MORE over the Russian strongman,” the piece continued.

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Trump drew swift, bipartisan backlash on Monday after he refuted his own intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, saying while standing next to Putin that he doesn’t “see any reason” why Russia would have been behind the hacking.

He also said that Putin was “extremely strong and powerful in his denial” during the summit on Monday.

“Denials from liars usually are strong and powerful,” The Wall Street Journal said. “The charitable explanation for this kowtow to the Kremlin is that Mr. Trump can’t get past his fury that critics claim his election was tainted by Russian interference. And so he couldn’t resist, in front of the world, going off on a solipsistic ramble about “Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonMueller's team asking Manafort about Roger Stone: report O'Rourke targets Cruz with several attack ads a day after debate GOP pollster says polls didn't pick up on movement in week before 2016 election MORE’s emails” and Democratic ‘servers.’”

The editorial went on to say that for a “rare moment” in his presidency, Trump “projected weakness" during the press conference.

“He was the one on stage beseeching Mr. Putin for a better relationship, while the Russian played it cool and matter of fact,” the Journal said. “Mr. Trump touted their personal rapport, saying the bilateral ‘relationship has never been worse than it is now. However, that changed as of about four hours ago. I really believe that.’ In four hours?” 

The editorial board said that Trump went “soft” on Putin, adding that will make it “even harder” for Trump to make deals with the Russian leader in the future. 

“Republicans and Democrats will unite in Congress, as they should, to limit his diplomatic running room,” the opinion piece concluded. “Mr. Trump may decide to court Mr. Putin anyway, like Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaCampaign staffers sue Illinois Dem governor candidate over alleged racial discrimination Bipartisanship is a greater danger than political polarization GOP group makes late play in Iowa seat once seen as lost MORE did Iran’s mullahs, but political isolation concerning a foreign adversary is a weak and dangerous place to be.”

The Journal has occasionally criticized Trump in the past. In late June, the publication’s editorial board tore into his trade policies and warned that Republicans may suffer in the 2018 midterms due to the president's tariffs.