Trump returns from summit with Putin to forceful criticism

HELSINKI (AP) — President Donald Trump’s embrace of Russian President Vladimir Putin and questioning of American intelligence findings of Russian election meddling capped a European tour marked by criticism at home and abroad.

Trump returned to Washington Monday night as Republicans joined Democrats in rejecting his decision to side with a longtime foe on foreign soil over his own government. His performance was assailed by some Republicans as shameful, disgraceful and weak.

Trump’s meeting with Putin in Helsinki was his first time sharing the international stage with a man he has described as an important U.S. competitor — but whom he has also praised a strong, effective leader.

His remarks at Putin’s side illustrated again a willingness to upend decades of foreign policy and rattle Western allies in service of his political concerns.

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