President Trump offered a tweet in response to the indictments handed down in the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Here’s what he said on Twitter:
“Russia started their anti-US campaign in 2014, long before I announced that I would run for President,” he said. “The results of the election were not impacted.”
Russia started their anti-US campaign in 2014, long before I announced that I would run for President. The results of the election were not impacted. The Trump campaign did nothing wrong – no collusion!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 16, 2018
“The Trump campaign did nothing wrong,” he concluded, “no collusion!”
The indictment, however, appears to assert that the actions of the Russian operatives did have an impact on the 2016 election.
“From in or around 2014 to the present,” the indictment read, “Defendants knowingly and intentionally conspired with each other (and with persons known and unknown to the Grand Jury) to defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the government through fraud and deceit for the purpose of interfering with the U.S. political and electoral processes, including the presidential election of 2016.”
The White House officially weighs in
The White House also released a statement expanding on President Trump’s comment.
“Earlier today, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced indictments against 13 Russian nationals and 3 Russian entities for meddling in the 2016 Presidential election,” the statement read, “which began in 2014 before the President declared his candidacy.”
“President Donald J. Trump has been fully briefed on this matter and is glad to see the Special Counsel’s investigation further indicates—that there was NO COLLUSION between the Trump campaign and Russia and that the outcome of the election was not changed or affected,” it continued.
The statement added a quote from President Trump about the matter, saying, “it is more important than ever before to come together as Americans. We cannot allow those seeking to sow confusion, discord, and rancor to be successful.”
“It’s time we stop the outlandish partisan attacks, wild and false allegations, and far-fetched theories, which only serve to further the agendas of bad actors, like Russia, and do nothing to protect the principles of our institutions,” he continued. “We must unite as Americans to protect the integrity of our democracy and our elections.”
Trump and Russia
Critics of the president pointed to his recent decision to reject sanctions on Russian for meddling in the election that were overwhelmingly approved by Congress and signed by the president. More recently, the U.S. claimed that Russian-backed forces in Syria committed an unprovoked attack on our military which resulted in a counterattack that killed many Russian private contractors.
Bloomberg reported that the indictments did not preclude additional charges over alleged collusion.