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The Morning Briefing: The Red Scare Heats Up and Much, Much More

Good Tuesday morning.

Here is what's on the president's agenda today:

  • The president meets with members of Congress

Reactions to Trump's meeting with Putin

Yesterday, the president met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the two leaders held a joint press conference following their meeting. Trump was widely panned by people on both sides for treating Putin gently and questioning American intelligence agencies' assessments that the Russians tried to meddle in the 2016 elections. Negative reactions were swift and in some cases, over the top.

Anderson Cooper said the president's performance at the press conference was disgraceful. Senator John McCain agreed. Senator Chuck Schumer wonders if the RUSSIANS don't have some kind of dirt on Trump. A former aide for the U.S. ambassador to RUSSIA, Jon Huntsman, called on Trump to "resign if you have any honor." Of course, there were always going to be people who ripped Trump over the meeting no matter what happened.

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) chimed in, saying, "The president must appreciate that Russia is not our ally" and asserted, "No question that Russia interfered in our election."

Dan Coats, director of National Intelligence, also countered Trump: "The role of the Intelligence Community is to provide the best information and fact-based assessments possible for the President and policymakers," Coats said in a statement. "We have been clear in our assessments of Russian meddling in the 2016 election and their ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy, and we will continue to provide unvarnished and objective intelligence in support of our national security."

Former Obama CIA chief, probable anti-Trump coup co-conspirator, and partisan freak John Brennan claimed Trump's performance was treasonous.

Hillary Clinton put in her two cents and even Newt Gingrich weighed in: “President Trump must clarify his statements in Helsinki on our intelligence system and Putin,” Gingrich tweeted. “It is the most serious mistake of his presidency and must be corrected—-immediately.”

One of the more over-the-top reactions -- and that's saying something -- was Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.), who asked where "military folks" were. I'm not sure what this means, but Cohen clarified he was not calling for a coup. Of course.

All around not a great performance by Trump. I recognize he is in a tough situation because the resistance isn't really concerned with RUSSIAN interference per se, they are only interested in RUSSIAN interference as a way to delegitimize Trump's victory. Obama was fine to look the other way as long as conventional wisdom dictated that Hillary was going to win the election.