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Susan Walsh / AP

National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster joined ABC's "This Week" from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and was grilled by George Stephanopoulos about the meeting with Russian officials earlier this month in which President Trump reportedly disparaged James Comey and said his firing had eased pressure from the Russia probe. Key takeaways:

  • McMaster twice declined to say whether Trump confronted the officials about Russian interference in the election.
  • He acknowledged Trump discussed Comey's firing though he said the notes printed by the N.Y. Times may not be direct quotes. He said Trump had been trying to make a point about being "hamstrung" in his efforts to deal with Russia because of the investigation.
  • He said the FBI investigation did not come up when they were preparing for the meeting, suggesting Trump was improvising when he raised it.

Go deeper

In photos: D.C. and U.S. states on alert for pre-inauguration violence

National Guard troops stand behind security fencing with the dome of the U.S. Capitol Building behind them, on Jan. 16. Photo: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Security has been stepped up in Washington, D.C., and state capitols across the U.S. as authorities brace for potential violence this weekend.

Driving the news: Following the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by some supporters of President Trump, the FBI has said there could be armed protests in D.C. and in all 50 state capitols in the run-up to President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.

15 hours ago - Politics & Policy

The new Washington

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Axios subject-matter experts brief you on the incoming administration's plans and team.

Rep. Lou Correa tests positive for COVID-19

Lou Correa. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Rep. Lou Correa (D-Calif.) announced on Saturday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Correa is the latest Democratic lawmaker to share his positive test results after last week's deadly Capitol riot. Correa did not shelter in the designated safe zone with his congressional colleagues during the siege, per a spokesperson, instead staying outside to help Capitol Police.