The White House backed away on Thursday from President Donald Trump’s prior openness to a Russian government request to interrogate Americans, including former U.S. ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul and financier Bill Browder — a proposal that had sparked widespread outrage.
Trump called the idea an “incredible offer” during the news conference on Monday.A nd on Wednesday, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that the president would “meet with his team” on Putin’s proposal, setting off a Russia-related backlash against the Trump administration for the third straight day.
By Thursday, as the Senate prepared to formally rebuke Trump, the White House reversed course. “It is a proposal that was made in sincerity by President Putin, but President Trump disagrees with it,” Sanders said in a statement. “Hopefully President Putin will have the 12 identified Russians come to the United States to prove their innocence or guilt.”