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Top DHS official denies Trump avoided Russian election interference talks

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Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf fired back against reports indicating that President Trump had avoided conversations about or pressured aides not to bring up Russia’s election meddling during White House briefings.

Speaking with CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday, Wolf dismissed the idea that he or any other top administration officials found any topics unapproachable during conversations with the president after a former Homeland Security official, Miles Taylor, suggested during his own CNN interview last week that the president would be enraged by discussion of Russian interference.

“It’s completely different than everything I know about this president,” Wolf told CNN’s Jake Tapper.

“Bringing up Russia has never been a problem for me,” Wolf continued. “I don’t have any issue with bringing up any issue with President Trump … and we discuss a wide range of those issues every week.”

{mosads}Wolf was also questioned by Tapper as to whether he believes the president accepts the intelligence community’s ongoing conclusion that Russia is involved in efforts to interfere in national and local elections around the country.

“To my knowledge, absolutely,” Wolf told Tapper, adding that he would “let the president and the White House speak for themselves.”

Wolf’s comments come as Taylor ripped Trump during a wide-ranging CNN interview on Tuesday, accusing Trump of largely retreating from the duties of president.

“At the end of the day, the man with his finger on the nuclear trigger is a man whose mind is not on his job on a daily basis,” Taylor told CNN on Tuesday. “That is alarming, and that isn’t the opinion of just a handful of folks in the administration.” 

“I think at this point it’s time for us to put country over party, and I hope other Republicans will do the same,” he added.

Taylor is one of the highest-ranking former Trump administration officials to endorse former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign. Former GOP Secretary of State Colin Powell, who served under former President George W. Bush, also endorsed Biden for president.

Tags Chad Wolf Colin Powell Donald Trump Jake Tapper Joe Biden Russian election interference

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