WASHINGTON — President Trump on Thursday defended his willingness to accept campaign help from Russia or other foreign governments by equating it to the sort of diplomatic meetings he holds with world leaders as the nation’s chief executive.
In an interview with ABC News broadcast on Wednesday night, Mr. Trump had rejected his own F.B.I. director’s recommendation that candidates call the authorities if foreign governments seek to influence American elections, and said he would gladly take incriminating information about a campaign opponent from adversaries like Russia.
“I meet and talk to ‘foreign governments’ every day,” he wrote Thursday on Twitter. “I just met with the Queen of England (U.K.), the Prince of Whales, the P.M. of the United Kingdom, the P.M. of Ireland, the President of France and the President of Poland. We talked about ‘Everything!’ ” he added, misspelling the title of Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales.
“Should I immediately call the FBI about these calls and meetings?” he continued. “How ridiculous! I would never be trusted again. With that being said, my full answer is rarely played by the Fake News Media. They purposely leave out the part that matters.”