During the latest off-camera White House briefing on Monday, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said President Trump was joking when he encouraged Russian hackers to go after Hillary Clinton’s campaign during the 2016 election.
“He was joking at the time. We all know it,” Spicer said.
When then-candidate Donald Trump made the comment on July 27, 2016, it was clear that he was not joking.
Despite overwhelming evidence from intelligence agencies, President Trump had denied the interference of Russian hackers in the 2016 election until recently. Spicer also added that Trump believes Russia as well as other countries could have been involved in the hacking of the 2016 election.
Trump’s thoughts on the hacking seemingly changed after the release of the Washington Post’s investigation of the Obama administration’s struggle to punish Russian President Vladimir Putin’s direct assault on the U.S. presidential race. President Trump is now blaming the Russian hacking on the previous administration.
Outside of Twitter, Trump has yet to make public statement about Russian interference on the 2016 Presidential election.