An Unearthed 2013 Interview Shows Trump Admitting To A ‘Relationship’ With Putin

In a press conference Thursday in Florida, Donald Trump repeatedly told reporters that he has no relationship with Russian leader Vladmir Putin. “I never met Putin, I don’t know who Putin is. He said one nice thing about me; he said I’m a genius. I said ‘Thank you very much’ to the newspaper, and that was the end of it. I never met Putin,” the Republican presidential candidate said. Minutes later, he repeated his claims: “I’ve ever spoken to him, I don’t know anything about him other than that he will respect me.”

However, as MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts pointed out on Friday, he received a different answer back in 2013, when he interviewed Trump in Moscow. At the time, Roberts was the co-host of a show that was “a joint production of NBC Entertainment and the Trump Organization.” He interviewed Trump ahead of the Miss Universe pageant being held in Russia that year, and Roberts inquired whether there was any sort of “relationship” at all, including one what could have “sway or influence” over Russia. Here’s what Trump said:

“I do have a relationship, and I can tell you he’s very interested in what we’re doing here today. He’s probably very interested in what you and I are saying today and I’m sure he’s going to be seeing it in some form, but I do have a relationship with him. I think it’s very interesting to see what’s happened. I mean look, he’s done a very brilliant job in terms of what he represents and who he’s representing. If you look at what he’s done with Syria, if you look at so many of the different things, he has really eaten our president’s lunch. Let’s not kid ourselves.”

According to Roberts, he was aware of efforts being made to connect Trump and Putin while the billionaire was in Moscow. Based on his interview with Trump, he was “under the impression they shared an open dialogue.”

(Via NBC News & Washington Post)