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Trump vows Putin is ‘not going into Ukraine’ — two years after Russia annexed Crimea

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In an interview with ABC News, which aired in full length Sunday morning, This Week host George Stephanopoulos grilled GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump over his relationship with Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Stephanopoulos pressed Trump over previous claims he had a relationship with Putin, which he now denies.

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“Well, I don’t know what it means by having a relationship,” Trump said, according a transcript of the interview. “I mean, he was saying very good things about me. But I don’t have a relationship with him. I didn’t meet him. I haven’t spent time with him. I didn’t have dinner with him. I didn’t– go hiking with him. I don’t know– I– I wouldn’t know him from Adam except I see his picture, and I would know what he looks like.”

MSNBC unearthed footage of an interview with Trump three years ago saying the opposite.

“I do have a relationship, and I can tell you that he’s very interested in what we’re doing here today,” he had told host Thomas Roberts.

Stephanopoulos pressed Trump on his foreign policy positions that, if elected, would serve in Putin’s interest, including softening the GOP’s platform toward Putin’s annexation of Crimea, which Ukraine still claims rights to.

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The Trump campaign removed language promising to provide Ukraine with weapons necessary to defend itself against Russian advances.

“Yeah. I was not involved in that. I’d like to– I’d have to take a look at it. But I was not involved in it,” Trump responded. “They softened it, I heard. But I was not involved.”

Stephanopoulos pointed out “they took away the part of the platform calling for provision of lethal weapons to Ukraine to defend themselves. Why is that a good idea?”

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Trump then responded he “has his own ideas.”

“He’s not going into Ukraine, okay, just so you understand,” Trump responded. “He’s not gonna go into Ukraine, all right? You can mark it down. You can put it down. You can take it anywhere you want.”

Stephanopoulos then pointed out that Putin is “already there” and noted Trump had said he’d consider recognizing Russia’s annexation of Crimea if he were elected president.

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Trump said he’d “take a look at” the Russian take-over of Crimea but then made a pro-Kremlin talking point.

“But you know, the people of Crimea, from what I’ve heard, would rather be with Russia than where they were,” Trump said. “And you have to look at that, also. Now, that was under– just so you understand, that was done under Obama’s administration.”

Watch the exchange, as posted to Twitter by ABC News, here:

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Here’s one big reason why Trump is having a white-hot meltdown over the Fed not dropping interest rates

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President Donald Trump has a personal conflict-of-interest that may be impacting his decisions in his public feud with Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell.

"President Trump stands to save millions of dollars annually in interest on outstanding loans on his hotels and resorts if the Federal Reserve lowers rates as he has been demanding, according to public filings and financial experts," The Washington Post reported Saturday.

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Trump approves of North Korea missile tests: ‘I have no problem’ because they’re just ‘short-range missiles’

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On Thursday, in conversation with reporters, President Donald Trump said that he had 'no problem' with North Korea's new round of missile tests.

"Short-range missiles, we never made an agreement on that," said Trump. "I have no problem, we'll see what happens, but these are short-range missiles. They're very standard."

The thought that short-range missiles would still be capable of hitting our allies in the region, like South Korea and Japan, does not seem to have occurred to him.

Watch below:

Trump says he has "no problem" with North Korea testing missiles because they are just "short-range missiles" that are "very standard." pic.twitter.com/fdKtQ6yrBE

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Elections 2016

Russian Twitter propaganda predicted 2016 US election polls

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When Robert Mueller completed his long-awaited investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, he left many questions unanswered.

But one conclusion was unequivocal: Russia unleashed an extensive campaign of fake news and disinformation on social media with the aim of distorting U.S. public opinion, sowing discord and swinging the election in favor of the Republican candidate Donald Trump.

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