'Fox & Friends' co-host Kilmeade: Trump needs to 'clarify' comments on accepting foreign campaign intelligence

“Fox & Friends” co-host Brian Kilmeade on Thursday called on President TrumpDonald John TrumpButtigieg surges ahead of Iowa caucuses Biden leads among Latino Democrats in Texas, California Kavanaugh hailed by conservative gathering in first public speech since confirmation MORE to “clarify” his remarks about accepting damaging information about a political opponent from a foreign actor.

“Nothing’s free in the world. You don’t want a foreign government or foreign entity giving you information because they will want something back. If anybody knows that, it is the president. There is no free lunch,” Kilmeade said. “If someone gives information, they want influence.”

“I think the president has to clarify that. I’m glad he is coming on tomorrow. He opened himself wide up to attacks,” he continued.

ADVERTISEMENT

During an interview with ABC’s George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosSenate Republicans can acquit Trump — but they cannot defend his conduct Scalise doesn't directly say whether it's OK for Trump to ask Ukraine to investigate political opponents White House officials work to tamp down controversies after a tumultuous week MORE first broadcast on Wednesday, Trump said "you might want to listen" if a foreign actor reached out with potentially damaging information about a political opponent.

He rejected the idea that he'd call the FBI, which FBI Director Christopher Wray has said is the thing he'd advise candidates to do in such a situation.

"I think you might want to listen. There’s nothing wrong with listening," Trump told Stephanopoulos. "It’s not an interference. They have information. I think I’d take it. If I thought there was something wrong, I’d go maybe to the FBI."

When Stephanopoulos noted Wray's remarks, Trump said: "The FBI director is wrong."

Kilmeade in a discussion with the other hosts of the program invoked the hypothetical situation of China offering dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegButtigieg surges ahead of Iowa caucuses Overnight Health Care: Cigarette smoking rates at new low | Spread of vaping illness slowing | Dems in Congress push to block Trump abortion rule Ocasio-Cortez jabs 'plutocratic' late entrants to 2020 field MORE.

“The president should say, ‘Hey, keep it. I got this because I don’t want to owe China or Russia something in return,’” Kilmeade said.