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Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. Photo: Brendan Smialowski

President Trump is calling his 2+ hour one-on-one Helsinki meeting with Vladimir Putin “a very, very good start for everybody.”

"I think we have great opportunities together ... and frankly we have not been getting along very well for the last number of years ... I think we will end up having an extraordinary relationship ... Getting along with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing."
— Trump's remarks to reporters as meeting began

Trump opened his remarks by congratulating Putin on "a really great World Cup, one of the best ever."

  • "We have a lot of good things to talk about and things to talk about. ... I think the world wants to see us get along, we are the two great nuclear powers."
  • "We have 90 percent of the nuclear — that’s not a good thing, that’s a bad thing. And I think we hopefully can do something about that."
  • "And with that the world awaits, and I look forward to our personal discussion."
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Putin said to Trump: “Of course, the time has come that we speak extensively about our bilateral relations and various problem points around the world. There are enough of them that we ought to pay attention to them.”

The Russians said that the one-on-one meeting between the two leaders lasted a little over two hours, but White House spokesman Hogan Gidley did not confirm, the pool reports. A news conference is expected later today after an expanded meeting with more officials from each country.

Presidents Trump and Putin at a dining table in the Hall of Mirrors, flanked by officials, after their one-on-one meeting. Photo: White House Press Pool

Go deeper

18 mins ago - Technology

Ex-N.Y. Post digital chief files lawsuit alleging sexual harassment

Richard B. Levine) (Photo by Richard Levine/Corbis via Getty Images

Former New York Post editor Michelle Gotthelf is suing her former employer, its parent company News Corp. and two editors, alleging she was reprimanded after complaining to senior executives that she was sexually harassed by retired N.Y. Post editor-in-chief Col Allan. The N.Y. Post issued a statement denying any wrongdoing.

Why it matters: "I felt that I owed it to myself and I owed it to the news organization and the people who answered to me," Gotthelf, who was a long time editor at the N.Y. Post, told Axios in an interview.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Political consultants pocket taxpayer cash

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Members of Congress are turning to the same political consultants who got them elected to blast out taxpayer-funded communications from their government offices, records show.

Why it matters: While those members are barred from politicking with official funds, the firms have expertise in boosting elected officials' images for political gain and are in high demand for both campaign and government work.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Transplants rebound from COVID lull
  2. Vaccines: WHO: No evidence that healthy children, teens need boosters — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America
  3. Politics: Government website for free COVID tests launches early
  4. World: Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older
  5. Variant tracker