Transcript for Trump invites network anchors to White House on eve of 1st foreign trip
Gio, thank you. We're in Washington tonight, because some of the network anchors were invited to the white house today to meet with president trump on the eve of his first foreign trip. I asked the president how he'll answer overseas when asked does he support this new special counsel overseeing the Russian investigation. The president telling me that he believes it hurts the country. He didn't stopped there. When asked did he pressure Comey to stop the investigation into Michael Flynn. Here's ABC's John Karl. Reporter: Tonight, asked for the first time about the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Russian meddling in the campaign, president trump insisted the whole investigation is a witch hunt. Mr. President, I would like to get your reaction to deputy attorney general rod Rosenstein's decision to appoint a special counsel to investigate the Russia -- Russian interference in the campaign. Was this the right move or is this part of a witch hunt? Well, I respect the move, but the entire thing has been a witch hunt, and there is no collusion between certainly myself and my campaign, but I can always speak for myself, and the Russians, zero. I think it divides the country. I think we have a very divided country because of that, and many other things. So I can tell you that we want to bring this great country of ours together, Jon. Reporter: Behind closed doors, in a meeting with network anchors, the president went even further. David Muir asked him about his upcoming foreign trip, saying that world leaders would undoubtedly ask him if he supports the idea of a special counsel. The president's response -- "I believe it hurts our country terribly, because it shows we're a divided, mixed-up, not-unified country. It also happens to be a pure excuse for the Democrats, having lost an election that they should have easily won, and I think it's a very, very negative thing. And hopefully, this can go quickly." In his news conference, the president was also asked whether he tried to protect his fired national security advisor Michael Flynn from an FBI investigation. Did you at any time urge former FBI director James Comey in any way, shape, or form to close or back down the investigation into Michael Flynn? And also -- No. No. Next question. Reporter: That answer now setting up a showdown with Comey, who reportedly took detailed notes of his conversations with the president. Jon Karl live with us from the white house. This does set up a showdown of sort between the president and James Comey, only two people in that room and one memo reportedly written by James Comey, sailing the president did pressure him to drop the Flynn investigation. But the president made it clear today if in that room that simply did not happen. It was a category call denial. In the memo Comey said, I hope you can see your way of letting this go, Flynn go. Jon Karl live with us from the white house.
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