Trump says he won't turn 'Perry Mason' on Putin over election meddling


The indictments come just days before the president is scheduled to hold a summit with Russia's Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

A federal grand jury on Friday indicted the Russian intelligence officers on charges of hacking the computer networks of 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party.

Other Democratic members of Congress, including Rep. Adam Schiff and Sen.

Meanwhile, a handful of House and Senate members called on Mr. Trump to cancel the Putin summit, or at least reconsider it. Sen.

Earlier Friday during a press conference overseas with his British counterpart, Trump vowed to press Putin about his government's interference in the 2016 American election - though he appeared to leave open, as always, the possibility that he won't.

'I will absolutely bring that up. You'll be the first to know, ' he told reporters. I don't think he'll have any 'Gee, I did it, I did it, you got me, ' Trump predicted of his meeting with the former KGB colonel. "I will absolutely, firmly ask the question and hopefully we'll have a very good relationship with Russian Federation". Instead, she said Trump should use the meeting to secure a comprehensive pact that the Russians will stop their "ongoing attacks on our democracy".

After the indictments were announced, Democrats were quick to urge Trump to cancel the meeting.

Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island, the top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said Trump shouldn't meet with Russia's leader "in light of this stunning indictment by the Justice Department that these Russian conspirators attacked our democracy and were communicating with Americans to interfere in our election". "I'm pleased that the Justice Department is following the facts wherever they may lead, despite Donald Trump's unsafe distortions and his refusal to acknowledge the conclusions reached by the American intelligence community".

The White House quickly tried to use the indictment to further its claims that the president's 2016 campaign did not conspire with Russians.

According to White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, however, the summit is "still on" despite calls that it be cancelled. "This is consistent with what we have been saying all along".

"If [Trump] and his team are not willing to make the facts of this indictment a top priority of the meeting with Putin, then he needs to cancel it - the Helsinki summit", Warner added.