Trump exchanges 'pleasantries' but doesn't meet with Kelli Ward at Mar-a-Lago

Trump exchanges 'pleasantries' but doesn't meet with Kelli Ward at Mar-a-Lago
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump directed Cohen to lie to Congress about plans to build Trump Tower in Moscow during 2016 campaign: report DC train system losing 0k per day during government shutdown Senate Republicans eye rules change to speed Trump nominees MORE "exchanged pleasantries" with GOP Senate candidate Kelli Ward at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida on Friday, according to a White House spokesperson.

The spokesperson did not elaborate on the details of the exchange. 

Ward tweeted earlier Friday that she was happy to see Trump arrive at Mar-a-Lago for the holidays, saying he needs some "celebratory time" with family and friends.

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ABC News's Tara Palmeri tweeted Friday that Trump fielded a meeting with the insurgent GOP candidate, though a White House spokesperson said later it was simply an exchange of pleasantries.

Ward, who launched a bid to challenge Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeSchumer recruiting top-notch candidate for McCain Senate seat The Hill's Morning Report — Trump eyes wall money options as shutdown hits 21 days Poll: Sanders most popular senator, Flake least MORE (R-Ariz.) earlier this year, is backed by Trump's former White House chief strategist, Stephen Bannon.

Bannon is recruiting and supporting candidates to challenge sitting Republican lawmakers he considers too cozy with the party's establishment wing.

Flake, a vocal critic of Trump, announced in October that he would not run for reelection, citing disparities between his own brand of conservatism and that of Trump and Bannon.

— Updated on Dec. 23 at 10:35 a.m.