‘If Putin likes Trump, guess what, folks, that’s an asset’: president-elect on whether Russia helped him win

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  • TRUMP ON LATEST NEWS ON RUSSIA AND THE ELECTION
    “I just want to compliment many of the people in the room (for not initially reporting on the document). … I have great respect for the news and great respect for freedom of the press.”
    “I think it’s a disgrace that information would be let out. It’s all fake news. It didn’t happen. It’s phoney stuff. It was a group of opponents who got together, sick people, who put that out.”
    “As far as hacking, I think it’s Russia. But we also get hacked by other countries and other people and I can say that.”
    “I have no dealings with Russia. I have no dealings in Russia … I have no loans with Russia at all.”
  • TRUMP ON PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES
    “We have to get our drug industry coming back,” he said, adding it had been “disastrous and leaving left and right.”
    Trump also called for new bidding procedures for U.S. drug companies, saying, “They’re getting away with murder (with drug prices) … “There’s very little bidding for drugs. We’re the largest buyer of drugs in the world and yet we don’t bid properly. We’re going to start bidding and we’re going to start saving billions of dollars.”
  • TRUMP ON MILITARY AIRCRAFT PROGRAMS
    “The admirals have been fantastic, the generals have been fantastic” … He said the F-35’S costs were “billions of dollars way over budget. “We’re going to get those costs way down, and we’re going to get some competition and it’s going to be a beautiful thing.”
  • TRUMP ON JOBS
    “I said I will be the greatest jobs producer that God ever created, and I mean that.”
  • TRUMP ON VETERANS
    Trump announced the nomination of David Shulkin as secretary of Veteran Affairs. “We’re going to straighten out the VA for our veterans. I have been promising that for a long time … We interviewed at least 100 people (for VA head), some good, some not so good … Our veterans have been treated very unfairly.”
  • TRUMP ON HIS TAXES
    “I’m not going to release tax returns because, as you know, they’re under audit” by the Internal Revenue Service.

NEW YORK — Defiant and unyielding, President-elect Donald Trump on Wednesday adamantly denied reports that Russia had obtained compromising personal and financial information about him, calling it a “tremendous blot” on the record of the intelligence community if it had released such material.

The incoming president, in his first news conference since late July, firmly pushed back on the media reports and chided news organizations for publishing the material late Tuesday night. His extraordinary defence, coming just nine days before Trump’s inauguration, dominated a highly anticipated press conference in which the future president also announced a new Cabinet member and his plans to disentangle himself from his sprawling global business empire.

“I think it’s a disgrace that information would be let out. I saw the information, I read the information outside of that meeting,” he said, a reference to a classified briefing he received from intelligence leaders. “It’s all fake news, it’s phoney stuff, it didn’t happen,” Trump said. “It was gotten by opponents of ours.”

Asked about whether he accepted that Russian President Vladimir Putin tried to help him win the presidential election, Trump called it “an asset, not a liability” and an improvement over what he called America’s current “horrible relationship with Russia.”

“If Putin likes Donald Trump, guess what, folks, that’s called an asset not a liability. I don’t know if I’m going to get along with Vladimir Putin — I hope I do — but there’s a good chance I won’t.”

Trump, Vice-President-elect Mike Pence and incoming White House press secretary Sean Spicer denounced the reports about Russia’s influence on Trump and the incoming president said the report never should have been released. He thanked some news organizations for showing restraint.

A U.S. official told The Associated Press on Tuesday night that intelligence officials had informed Trump last week about an unsubstantiated report that Russia had obtained compromising personal and financial information about him. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because the official was not allowed to publicly discuss the matter.

Trump and President Barack Obama were briefed on the intelligence community’s findings last week, the official said.

Media outlets reported on the document late Tuesday and Trump denounced it on Twitter before his news conference as “fake news,” suggesting he was being persecuted for defeating other GOP presidential hopefuls and Democrat Hillary Clinton in the election.

President-elect Donald Trump speaks during a news conference in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017.

The dossier contains unproven information about close co-ordination between Trump’s inner circle and Russians about hacking into Democratic accounts as well as unproven claims about unusual sexual activities by Trump among other suggestions attributed to anonymous sources. The Associated Press has not authenticated any of the claims.

Pence said the decision by some media to publish the reports could “only be attributed to media bias” and an attempt to “demean” Trump.

Only days from his inauguration as the nation’s 45th president, Trump announced that he would nominate David Shulkin to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, elevating him from his current role as VA undersecretary.

Trump also announced his plans for the future of the Trump Organization, bringing to the podium attorney Sheri Dillon of Morgan Lewis, who worked with the Trump Organization on the arrangement.

President-elect Donald Trump, accompanied by his family, arrives a news conference in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) ORG XMIT: NYEV102

Dillon said the Trump Organization would continue to pursue deals in the U.S., though Trump will relinquish control of the company to his sons and an executive, put his business assets in a trust and take other steps to isolate himself from his business. She said Trump “should not be expected to destroy the company he built.”

The move appears to contradict a previous pledge by the president-elect. In a tweet last month, Trump vowed to do “no new deals” while in office.

The lawyer who advised Trump also said that the Trump Organization will appoint an ethics adviser to its management team who must approve deals that could raise concerns about conflicts.

This article was sourced from http://economy-news.info