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Trump tweet acknowledges ‘Russia helping me get elected’

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President Donald Trump in a tweet on Thursday acknowleged “Russia helping me get elected” to the presidency in 2016, seemingly a first for him.

The president has spent years either denying Russia interfered in the election or that it had any effect on his victory.

The message was part of a thread distancing himself from Russia.

Trump mentioned Russian help in the context of having “nothing to do with” it — but it is nonetheless a significant shift from his claims that help from Russia did not even take place.

One version of the tweet was deleted, but then reposted as part of a new thread which removed spelling errors.

The tweets were part of a series in which the president renewed his attacks on former special counsel Robert Mueller’s recently concluded probe into Russian interference, and allegations that Trump obstructed justice.

“The Greatest Presidential Harassment in history. After spending $40,000,000 over two dark years, with unlimited access, people, resources and cooperation, highly conflicted Robert Mueller would have brought charges, if he had ANYTHING, but there were no charges to bring!” tweeted the president.

“Russia, Russia, Russia! That’s all you heard at the beginning of this Witch Hunt Hoax…And now Russia has disappeared because I had nothing to do with Russia helping me to get elected. It was a crime that didn’t exist,” Trump continued.

Trump in 2016 famously refused to accept that Russians were responsible for stealing Democrat emails, claiming that the hacker “could also be someone sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds.”

Standing next to Russia’s President Vladmimir Putin at the June 2018 Helsinki summit, Trump attracted fierce bipartisan criticism after appearing to accept Putin’s denial that Russia interfered. US, British and other intelligence agencies have concluded that Russia did.

He has also denied the interference campaign had any influence on his win, tweeting in April “Anything the Russians did concerning the 2016 Election was done while Obama was President. He was told about it and did nothing!

“Most importantly, the vote was not affected.”

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