Trump says he has written answers to Russia probe questions


President Trump said Friday that he has answered a set of questions from Special Counsel Robert Mueller "very easily", and his lawyers are signaling that the president expects to turn over his written answers in the coming days.

On Friday, the President said he was done with his answers, though they have yet to be submitted.

The president told reporters on Friday that he wrote the answers, not his lawyers, and that he did so "very easily". To that end, it has been negotiating for months with the White House over how, when and where Trump might address questions about his role in the matter.

The special counsel has signalled a willingness to accept written answers on matters related to collusion with Russian Federation, but Mr Giuliani has said repeatedly the president would not answer Mr Mueller's questions on possible obstruction of justice.

Trump and his lawyers had been in negotiations with Mueller's team for months over how the president would be questioned as part of the investigation.

Mr Mueller has signalled a willingness to accept written answers on matters related to collusion with Russian Federation.

"I'm sure they're tricked up", Trump said. Despite Mr. Trump's insistence that he's "very happy" with how things are going, his frustrations with the probe have been evident everywhere from his Twitter feed this past week to his private grousing that the special counsel may target his family. Adding to his grim outlook has been the barrage of criticism he's getting over his choice for acting attorney general and late-arriving election results that have largely been tipping toward House Democrats.

Protesters gathered in front of the White House last week as part of a nationwide
ANDREW HARNIK APProtesters gathered in front of the White House last week as part of a nationwide"Protect Mueller campaign

Mr. Mueller's investigators presented at least two dozen questions about events that took place prior to the 2016 election, according to a Washington Post report Thursday. He also suggested that Mueller's team don't care "how many lives they can ruin". Trump also told reporters Saturday that a sit-down interview with investigators hadn't been discussed.

The tweets came a week after he forced the resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, replacing him with Matthew Whitaker, who now has the power to sack Mr Mueller or end the investigation.

Democrats and a number of Republicans have raised concerns about Whitaker's appointment, with a bipartisan group of US senators renewing a push for legislation to protect the special counsel.

One argument against Whitaker was that he has not been confirmed by Senate.

Trump claimed the "inner workings" of the investigations is a "total mess" and it has gone "completely nuts".

The renewed focus on the looming threat from Mueller comes as Trump settles back into the day-to-day routines of governing after the whirlwind campaign in which he spent weeks in front of adoring rally crowds while whipping up his base with harsh rhetoric about migrants moving through Mexico. That move gave Whitaker, a Trump loyalist, oversight over the Mueller probe rather than Rod Rosenstein, the department's No. 2 official who previously had authority over it.

In 2016, USA intelligence agencies concluded that Russian Federation had used a state-authorised campaign of cyber attacks and fake news stories planted on social media in an attempt to turn the election against Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton.

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