President Trump embarks on first trip to Asia

Trump will visit 5 Asian countries in 13 days but will the Russia investigation overshadow this important trip?
5:59 | 11/04/17

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Transcript for President Trump embarks on first trip to Asia
President trump is waking up in Hawaii this morning. We have pictures from the president's Instagram account as he greets the locals wearing a lei. He starts in Japan then south Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines all amid serious concerns about the threat of a nuclear North Korea. But domestic concerns will not evaporate just because the president is way. Before leaving for this trip the president slammed the justice department for not investigating Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. Critics say the president is trying to distract from the Russia investigation including new questions about this meeting with a foreign policy adviser named George papadopoulos who is now cooping are federal investigators. We'll start in Tokyo where Cecilia Vega is standing by. Cecilia, good morning to you. Reporter: Hey, guys, good morning. This will be a jam-packed trip for president trump. His longest trip abroad since taking office. North Korea, of course, front and center. Not to mention as you say all those controversies back at home. The first leg of the president's longest trip abroad kicked off in Hawaii where president trump and the first lady were welcomed with leis after meeting top military brass -- I tell you this is very special to be in Hawaii. Reporter: The president immediate his first ever visit to pearl harbor and he and Hirst fed Melania trump boarded a boat to the "Uss Arizona" where they tossed white flower petals at the site honoring more than 2400 Americans who died in the attack. Before leaving the white house on Friday, the president announced I'll be abroad even longer than planned. His trip now a 13-day run to five Asian countries. And I think we're going to have great success E we'll be talking about trade. We'll be talking about obviously North Korea. We'll be enlisting the help of a lot of people and countries. Reporter: The threat of north Korea looms large. But the Russia investigation back home also has the potential to overshadow what's being called his most important foreign trip yet. This morning, the trump administration faces lingering questions about this March 2016 campaign meeting where according to court filings, foreign policy adviser George papadopoulos told the group including president trump and now attorney general Jeff sessions he had connections with Russia that could help arrange a meeting between trump and Vladimir Putin. I don't remember much about that meeting. It was a very unimportant meeting. Took place a long time -- don't remember much about it. Reporter: Despite the president telling me shortly after election day -- Did you or anyone in your campaign have any contact with Russia leading up to or during the campaign? Nothing at all. No, not at all. Asked if he stands by that now, he tells us this. All I can tell you, there was no collusion, there was no nothing. It is a disgrace, frankly, that they continue. Reporter: And those questions are sure to follow him here. Now, this is going to be the longest trip to the region by any American president in 25 years. The white house says this demonstrate president trump's commitment to the region. This is the front page that the Japanese are waking up to this morning. Ivanka Trump on the front page, not her father. She was here days early to kick off this diplomatic mission, guys. Overshadowing dad. Cecilia, thank you. Let's bring in ABC news political consultant Matthew dowd who is in Austin, Texas. Good morning, Matthew. Good morning. Given what we're learning about the president and Jeff sessions being in the room when this foreign policy adviser offered to arrange a meeting with the rugzs how worried should trump be as he travels to Asia? He should be very worried. Interesting to me you have George papadopoulos and Carter page, it's like the island of misfit advisers surround trump in all of this. I think it's very problematic and I think going on this trip to me is a funny thing to watch as if he's going from a high-stakes Texas hold 'em tournament where all his chips are at risk and going to take a break from that stress to do a high-wire juggling act and that's the problem he's in right now. He leaves one situation to go and do a more problematic situation in Asia. Crises all around him, no question about that. Let me ask you about something he said before he took off. He had been taking aim at his own department of justice for not investigating Hillary Clinton. Take a listen to what he told our Jon Karl. I don't know. I'm really not involved with the justice department. I'd like to let it run itself. But honestly, they should be looking at the Democrats. They should be looking at podesta and all of that dishonesty. They should be looking at a lot of things and a lot of people are disappointed in the justice department including me. Thank you, everybody. Thank you. So that was an answer to a question from Jon Karl who asked should Jeff sessions, your attorney general be fired and the president said, I don't know. Not exactly a ringing endorsement but the question for you is, is trump right that the doj should be looking at Hillary and the Democrats? Was there some sort of law breaking here or do you think this is an effort to distract from the Russia. Total misdirection. He might have been David copperfield in Las Vegas the level of misdirection he's doing in this. You look at all the things he' talked about. There is nothing to the uranium story. This idea that Hillary Clinton and her campaign colluded with Russia has been debunked and now this thing with Donna Brazile and the DNC and everything. All of us know that both parties rigged the process in order to engage a certain kind of voter but this is standard procedure and what the DNC did and the agreements they had with Hillary Clinton. It's a total misdirection in order to get the spotlight off Donald Trump and the investigations he has in order to try to direct it somewhere else. He'd be better off leaving the justice department and Bob Mueller alone, let them do their job and basically open it up and be transparent about it. I didn't see David copperfield coming this morning. Matt, thank you very much. You're welcome. Great to be here. Really appreciate it, Matt

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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