Rising: June 14, 2021
Papadopolous says he shouldn't have focused on trying to set up meeting with Trump, Putin
Former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos said in an interview airing Thursday on Hill.TV's "Rising" that he should not have "focused on" brokering a meeting between President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"I really probably shouldn't have focused on trying to set up a meeting between Trump and Putin," Papadopoulos told Hill.TV's Buck Sexton on Wednesday.
"I thought that [if] there was one country that candidate Trump really wanted to work with should he be elected president, it was Russia," he continued. "I thought, you know, if he wanted to really see if this could be a working relationship with Putin if he is elected, maybe a photo-op or some sort of summit of some nature where the two individuals can agree to each other would be a good idea."
As a campaign adviser, Papadopoulos unsuccessfully attempted to arrange a meeting between then-candidate Trump's campaign and Russia. Papadopoulos was sentenced last month to two weeks in prison for lying to FBI investigators about his contacts with London-based professor Joseph Mifsud and other Russia-linked individuals during the 2016 presidential campaign.
Mifsud, who was known to have high-level Russian contacts during the campaign, contacted Papadopoulos during the campaign and said he had "dirt" on Trump's then-opponent Hillary Clinton, before WikiLeaks began releasing troves of hacked Democratic emails.
Papadopoulos told Trump and now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions that Russia was interested in setting up a meeting between Trump and Putin. Sessions said he rejected the suggestion a meeting between the two, but Papadopoulos alleged last month that Sessions was "enthusiastic" about the idea.
- Julia Manchester