President Trump and Vladimir Putin tackled allegations of election meddling in unprecedented terms following their one-on-one summit Monday, with Trump opening the door to an unusual offer of cooperation in the special counsel probe and the Russian president suggesting he indeed favored the billionaire businessman in 2016.
But Putin, emphatically and repeatedly, denied meddling in the U.S. election, saying there's "no evidence." And Trump, while saying they spent a "great deal of time" discussing the allegations, blasted the ongoing probe as a "disaster for our country."
The two leaders spoke at a freewheeling joint press conference following a pair of meetings -- one private -- in Helsinki, Finland. Trump and Putin touted the summit as a "success," vowing to improve ties on a range of issues.
Congressman Jim Banks currently serves on the House Armed Services; Veterans Affairs; and Education and the Workforce Committees. Banks joined Fox News Radio's Guy Benson and Marie Harf to discuss Trump's meeting with Putin.
On if Trump stood up to Putin: No, he didn't at all. That's the biggest disappointment of today. Most of us had hoped that this was the president's opportunity to be with Vladimir Putin to let him know that the United States will not turn a blind eye to Russia's activities on so many levels, whether it's the invasion of Crimea, sovereign territory of Ukraine, whether its meddling in the American elections, continuing to side with the Assad regime in Syria. All of them stacked together are in direct conflict with the interest of the United States of America. (1:18)
On Trump statements saying we're all to blame: It's the opposite message that we hoped the president would say and vocalize at this press conference today. (4:46)
On what can Republicans do after this: We'll keep doing what we've been doing and I don't think that there's anything more important that we've done in this Congress than rebuilding the military. (6:55)
On Supreme Court nominee: Brett Kavanaugh is another tremendous pick from the president. While we go from talking about Russia and some of our disappointments in the activities of the day we give the president credit for picking these minds like Kavanaugh and Gorsuch and others in courts on all levels that understand the purpose of the court is to interpret the law and not as activists whose job is the same as the legislative branchs. (12:57)