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Amid Trump Troubles Comes News of Grand Jury
International

Amid Trump Troubles Comes News of Grand Jury

US President Donald Trump described Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election as a “total fabrication” Thursday amid reports that a special prosecutor has impaneled a grand jury to investigate the issue —a step toward possible criminal indictments.
“We didn’t win because of Russia. We won because of you,” Trump said at a campaign-style rally in West Virginia, AFP reported.
Trying to build support among his core supporters, he said his enemies were “trying to cheat you out of the leadership you want with a fake story that is demeaning to all of us and most importantly, demeaning to our country and demeaning to our constitution.”
“The reason why Democrats only talk about the totally made-up Russia story is because they have no message, no agenda, and no vision,” he said. “The Russia story is total fabrication. It’s just an excuse for the greatest loss in the history of American politics.”
His comments came after the Wall Street Journal revealed that special counsel Robert Mueller has impaneled a grand jury to investigate Russia’s interference with the 2016 presidential election.
The newspaper, citing two unnamed sources familiar with the matter, reported that the grand jury had begun its work in Washington “in recent weeks.”
The move is a sign that the sweeping federal investigation —which includes allegations that Trump campaign officials coordinated with Russia to tilt the election in the Republican’s favor— is gathering pace.
Trump’s latest problems come at a difficult time for the embattled president himself and the White House already struggling with scandals and firing of senior staff. In a latest episode, Trump’s blustery transcripts of phone calls with the leaders of Mexico and Australia in January were revealed by Washington Post.
During the calls, Trump pressured the Mexican president to stop voicing opposition in public to his plan to have Mexico pay for a border wall which shows how he attempted to influence foreign leaders in his first days in office.
“If you are going to say that Mexico is not going to pay for the wall, then I do not want to meet with you guys anymore because I cannot live with that,” Trump said.
He suggested that the two men avoid the issue of paying for the wall when asked.
“They are going to say, ‘Who is going to pay for the wall, Mr. President?’ to both of us, and we should both say, ‘We will work it out,’” Trump said. “It will work out in the formula somehow. As opposed to you saying, ‘We will not pay’ and me saying, ‘We will not pay,’” the US president said.
Trump told Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull during their call on January 28 that “I am the world’s greatest person” and “you are worse than I am.”

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