“Well, in all due respect to your previous guests, I think that those were the most ridiculous statements. President Trump is not getting played by anybody,” Mnuchin said on CNN’s “State of the Union.
His remarks come after former CIA director John Brennan and former director of national intelligence James Clapper indicated earlier on the show that Putin is fooling the president through flattery and manipulation.
“I think he’s giving Putin a pass.
When Tapper asked if Clapper agrees, he replied, “I do.”
“He seems very susceptible to rolling out the red carpet and honor guards and all this, all the trappings and pomp and circumstance that come with the office. And I think that – that appeals to him, and it – I think it plays to his insecurities. And, yes, I do think both the Chinese and Russians think they can play him,” Clapper said.
Trump on Saturday blasted Brennan and Clapper as well former FBI director James Comey for their assessment that Moscow interfered in last year’s election, calling them “Political hacks” and claiming that the probes into Russian interference are a “Democratic hit job.”
The president also said he is not going to “Argue” with Putin about whether Russia meddled in the 2016 election, instead signaling he wants to move forward and see if the two countries can work together on issues like the civil war in Syria and the war torn crisis in Ukraine.