Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) slammed President Trump after his Friday meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying America is “getting played” by both the world leaders.
“We’re getting played by our president and certainly we’re getting played by Putin,” Waters said in an interview on MSNBC. “I don’t like the idea that our president again would go into a room without any note-takers, without any staff…and come out of it saying how honored he is to meet with [Putin].”
Trump’s bilateral meeting with Putin on Friday, originally scheduled for 30 minutes, ran for more than two hours. The only participants in the meeting were Trump, Putin, Secretary of States Rex Tillerson, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and two translators.
After the meeting, the two diplomats shared conflicting accounts of what happened during the meeting.
Tillerson said that Trump confronted Putin over Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, and pressed the Russian leader despite his repeated denials.
But Lavrov offered a different story - that Trump “accepted” Putin’s claim that Russia did not meddle in the U.S. election.
"U.S. President Trump said that he heard firm assertions from Russian President Putin that it is not true and that Russian authorities have not meddled in the elections," Lavrov said. “[Trump] said that he accepts these assertions. That's it.”
The two leaders also reportedly pledged to form a “working group” on cyber security issues, promising to work together on threats like election interference and organized crime.