“I have nothing to do with Russia — haven’t made a phone call to Russia in years, don’t speak to people from Russia,” President Trump said during a press conference on Feb. 16.
But it seems Trump did meet the Russian ambassador during the campaign.
We don’t know what they talked about or even how long they spent together. But The Wall Street Journal said Trump “warmly greeted” Kislyak.
Trump and Kislyak reportedly met during a VIP reception in April for an event Trump gave a speech at. The Wall Street Journal reported three other foreign ambassadors attended the reception.
It’s not illegal or problematic for the two to greet one another or even hold a conversation. But this is another instance of the White House not disclosing contacts between Trump or his campaign members and Russian officials.
As recently as Sunday, the White House said Trump didn’t have any contact with Russia.
According to a pool report, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said, “The big point here is the president himself knows what his involvement was, and that’s zero.”
Huckabee Sanders told The Huffington Post Tuesday that Trump was at the reception for “about five minutes.” She said they don’t remember “who he may have shaken hands with at the reception … . To state a ‘meeting’ took place is disingenuous and extremely misleading.”