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Chip Somodevilla/Getty Image(WASHINGTON) -- President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner talked with the Russian ambassador in December about establishing a backchannel for communications, ABC News has learned from two sources.

The sources stress that the talk between Kushner and the Russian envoy about communications was focused on the U.S. response to the crisis in Syria and other policy-related matters.

The meeting, as ABC News has previously reported, took place at Trump Tower in New York and was also attended by Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, who later became President Trump's short-lived national security adviser.

The Washington Post was the first to report that Kushner wanted to set up a secret backchannel to communicate with Russian officials during the transition period between the election and Trump's inauguration.

The Post report cited communications intercepted by U.S. intelligence officials as Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak reported to his superiors in Moscow.

Russia occasionally attempts to deliberately disclose misleading information when it believes it is being monitored, allowing for the possibility that the request from Kushner did not actually occur, the Post story noted.

Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn was also present at the meeting between Kushner and Kislyak at which the ambassador "reportedly was taken aback by the suggestion of allowing an American to use Russian communications gear at its embassy or consulate," the Post reported.

This is not the first time reports of Kushner's relationships with Russians have surfaced: Kushner and Flynn met with Kislyak together in Trump Tower in December, and Kushner later met with Sergey Gorkov, who runs a bank that drew sanctions from the Obama administration after Russia annexed Crimea in 2014.

Kislyak has been at the center of contacts between Trump administration officials and Russia. The ambassador's conversations with Flynn prior to Trump's inauguration led to Flynn's firing in February after it was revealed that Flynn misled White House officials about the nature of their discussions.

Meetings between Kislyak and Attorney General Jeff Sessions resulted in Sessions' recusal from investigations into Russian interference in the presidential election. The ambassador was also present two weeks ago when President Trump revealed classified intelligence information during an Oval Office meeting.

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Jeff Vinnick/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Family members of President Trump, including his two sons, met for hours Thursday with Republican Party officials to discuss political strategy, ABC News has learned from sources with direct knowledge of the meeting.

The president's sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric, in addition to Eric's wife, Lara, attended the meeting at Republican National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C., sources told ABC News.

The meeting was first reported by the Washington Post, who said the Trump family members were invited by the RNC and that their appearance there bothered at least two prominent Republicans over questions of whether the president's sons should be involved in high-level party discussions considering they run the Trump real estate business

The Post reported that some other people familiar with the meeting thought it was fine for Trump family members who helped with the president's election campaign to offer their views ahead of the 2018 midterm elections and the 2020 presidential race.

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- A campaign rally with President Trump on June 1 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, has been postponed “due to an unforeseen change in President Trump’s schedule,” according to the Trump campaign team.

“Stay tuned for information on a rescheduled date early next week. Our sincere apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused,” an email sent from the Trump campaign read. “President Trump will see you in Iowa very soon.”

Since taking office in January, Trump has held rallies in Melbourne, Florida, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. His rally in Harrisburg marked his 100th day in office and was held the same evening as the White House Correspondents Dinner in Washington, D.C.

The president enjoys appearing before large crowds of supporters.

“Life is a campaign,” Trump told reporters on Air Force One before his rally in Florida. “Making our country great again is a campaign."

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ABC News(NEW YORK) -- It's been nearly seven months since Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 presidential election to Donald Trump. Now, she’s re-emerging onto the national scene to give a window into her post-election life.

New York magazine released on Friday next week's cover story, in which Clinton shares her reflections on the campaign, election night, sexism, James Comey, and slew of other topics.

Below, excerpts from the 8,000-word-plus article:

ON TRUMP’S DECISION TO FIRE FBI DIRECTOR JAMES COMEY:
“I am less surprised than I am worried... Not that he shouldn’t have been disciplined. And certainly the Trump campaign relished everything that was done to me in July and then particularly in October.” But “having said that, I think what’s going on now is an effort to derail and bury the Russia inquiry, and I think that’s terrible for our country.”

ON LISTENING TO TRUMP’S INAUGURATION SPEECH: "It was a really painful cry to his hard-core supporters that he wasn't changing… The 'carnage' in our country? It was a very disturbing moment. I caught Michelle Obama's eye, like, What is going on here? I was sitting next to George and Laura Bush, and we have our political differences, but this was beyond any experience any of us had ever had."

ON HER FEELINGS ON ELECTION NIGHT:
“This was a crushing, devastating blow… I just thought we had to get through this with a level of dignity and integrity, and there’d be plenty of time to try to figure out what went wrong and what we could have done differently, but for that moment we just had to stick to the ritualistic process: Okay, when I was sure, I have to call Trump. I want to call Obama. And then I have to figure out what I’m gonna do the next day… I had to get through that before I could go, ‘What the hell just happened?’ and be angry and upset. And be disappointed and feel I let people down and feel everything that I felt.”

Next week's cover: Hillary Clinton, profiled by @rtraister, photographed by @lynseyaddario https://t.co/7CXHdmRizw. pic.twitter.com/4eOgR4P0xM

— NYMag PR (@nymagPR) May 26, 2017


ON THOSE WHO SAY SHE WASN’T LIKABLE ENOUGH: “Well, this is the joke… You gotta be authentic! So you go out and try to be as effective as you can in presenting yourself and demonstrating the qualifications you have for the job, but you’re always walking a line about what will find approval from the general population and what won’t. It’s trial and error.”

ON SEXISM DURING THE CAMPAIGN: “Once I moved from serving someone — a man, the president — to seeking that job on my own, I was once again vulnerable to the barrage of innuendo and negativity and attacks that come with the territory of a woman who is striving to go further.”

ON PROGRESSIVE GRASSROOTS ORGANIZING: “It has to be sustained… And here is my big worry. The other side is sustained by greed and hate and power and ideology, and they never quit. They get up every day looking to take advantage and drive their agenda forward.”

ON LESSONS TO BE LEARNED FROM HER CAMPAIGN:
“Whoever comes next, this is not going to end. Republicans learned that if you suppress votes you win?… So take me out of the equation as a candidate. You know, I’m not running for anything. Put me into the equation as somebody who has lived the lessons that people who care about this country should probably pay attention to.”

ON MOVING FORWARD: “Forget the detractors, forget the kibitzers, forget the nasty guys and women… And figure out how we communicate with people who feel what we’ve been talking about, who know there’s something much bigger than me and my campaign. The values that 66 million people voted for are worth fighting for.”

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Mandel Ngan/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Zbigniew Brzezinski, the national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, died Friday night, his daughter has confirmed. He was 89.

"My father passed away peacefully tonight," Mika Brzezinski, co-host of MSNBC's "Morning Joe," wrote on Instagram. "He was known to his friends as Zbig, to his grandchildren as Chief and to his wife as the enduring love of her life. I just knew his as the most inspiring, loving and devoted father any girl could ever have. I love you Dad #HailToTheChief."

Zbigniew Brzezinski, whose predecessor was Henry Kissinger, helped topple economic barriers between the Soviet Union, China and the West. He also helped Carter facilitate a working and productive relationship between Egyptian and Israeli leaders, Anwar Sadat and Menachem Begin, leading to the Camp David accords. The Iranian hostage crisis was also under Brzezinski's watch.

Former President Carter said in a statement Friday night: "Rosalynn and I are saddened by the death of Zbigniew Brzezinski. He was an important part of our lives for more than four decades and was a superb public servant. Having studied Zbig’s impressive background and his scholarly and political writings, I called on him to advise me on foreign policy issues during my first presidential campaign. I liked him immediately, and we developed an excellent personal relationship. He was inquisitive, innovative and a natural choice as my national security advisor when I became president. He helped me set vital foreign policy goals, was a source of stimulation for the departments of defense and state, and everyone valued his opinion."

Carter added, "He played an essential role in all the key foreign policy events of my administration, including normalization of relations with China, signing of the SALT II treaty, brokering the Camp David Accords and the Panama Canal treaties, among others. He was brilliant, dedicated and loyal, and remained a close advisor to my work at the Carter Center. I will miss him."

Brzezinski was born in Warsaw on March 28, 1928. His father, Tadeusz, was a diplomat who took his family to France, then to Germany during the 1930s and then to Canada prior to World War II.

Mika Brzezinski also tweeted a photo of her family on a boat, with her father at the wheel.

Chief at the helm!

We love you, Dad, and will always be grateful for the love and devotion you showed us all. #HailToTheChief pic.twitter.com/4OtLuYIyZY

— Mika Brzezinski (@morningmika) May 27, 2017

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The FBI is investigating an attempted overseas cyberattack against the Trump Organization, summoning President Donald Trump’s sons, Don Jr. and Eric, for an emergency session with the bureau’s cybersecurity agents and representatives of the CIA, officials tell ABC News.

Law enforcement officials who spoke to ABC News on the condition of anonymity confirmed the attempted hack and said the subsequent meeting took place at the FBI’s New York headquarters on May 8, the day before Trump fired FBI director James Comey. Spokesmen for the FBI, CIA and Secret Service all declined to comment.

Reached by phone, Eric Trump, an executive vice president of the family company, would not confirm or deny that he and his brother had met with the FBI but told ABC News that the company had ultimately not been infiltrated.

“We absolutely weren’t hacked,” Eric Trump said during the brief call. “That’s crazy. We weren’t hacked, I can tell you that.”

As federal agencies monitor international computer networks in order to protect government and private sector computer infrastructure and data, the Trump Organization’s networks would be given high priority, according to Richard Frankel, a retired senior official with the FBI's New York office and an ABC News contributor.

"If there was a hack or an attempted hack of ... the company that was owned by the president, that would be at the top of the list of investigations," Frankel said. "If the FBI saw that kind of hack, they'd have to track that. There's no telling what a hacker could get that's connected to the president, corporate records, financial records, even things that were going on during the transition.”

The FBI’s involvement could come with some risks, Frankel said, both for the company and the president. In the course of its investigation, the FBI could get access to the Trump Organization’s computer network, meaning FBI agents could possibly find records connected to other investigations.

"There could be stuff in there that they do not want to become part of a separate criminal investigation," Frankel said.

In this case, if there had been communication between the Trump Organization and Russian entities, that information might be pertinent to the ongoing investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. A key focus of that probe is to see whether there was any collusion or coordination between the Trump campaign and Russian hackers.

Because the unusual session involved two of the president’s children, agents sent a special alert, or VIP notice, to senior officials at 26 Federal Plaza, the fortress-like headquarters for the FBI’s New York area operations. Officials briefed on the meeting said the discussion centered on a suspected hack of computer systems used by the international real estate holding company, but they did not say who was suspected in the attempted intrusion.

The May 8 meeting came at a tense time for those closest to the president. The FBI was, and still is, in the midst of the widening probe into Russian meddling in 2016 presidential election. A grand jury empaneled in Virginia had issued subpoenas in connection with Trump’s first national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn. The session with the president's sons also occurred the same day former acting Attorney General Sally Yates testified on Capitol Hill, and less than a week after Comey himself testified before Congress, officials say.

In addition to the meeting at the FBI's offices, FBI agents working on the cyber inquiry were also seen at Trump Tower during the week of May 8. Officials who spoke to ABC News would not say whether the subject of Russia’s hack of the 2016 election was raised during the discussions.

Over the past decade, both Don Jr. and Eric made trips to Russia on behalf of the Trump Organization, and both of them have been quoted in the past describing the significant sums coming into the company from Russian sources.

On May 5, golf writer James Dodson told WBUR radio that Eric Trump had bragged to him that Trump golf courses “have all the funding we need out of Russia,” a statement Eric Trump later denied making. In 2008, Don Jr. told investors in Moscow that the Trump Organization had trademarked the Donald Trump name in Russia as “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets … We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia,” according to an account on the real estate website eTurboNews.

Three weeks before Election Day, Don Jr. was paid $50,000 to travel to Paris to speak at a private dinner in Paris organized by an obscure pro-Russia group that promotes Kremlin foreign policy initiatives and has since nominated Russian President Vladimir Putin for the Nobel Peace Prize.

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The revelation that Jared Kushner's meetings with Russians are under scrutiny brings the federal investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election to Trump's inner circle.

The 36-year-old Kushner, who is married to Ivanka Trump, has had a growing role in that circle over the past two years, from Trump family member to trusted campaign adviser to White House senior adviser.

Kushner is a focus in the Russia investigation over his meetings with at least two Russian officials, Moscow's ambassador to the U.S. and a banking executive, sources tell ABC News.

He is not a target of the FBI investigation and has not been accused of committing a crime, but sources said he is among a number of White House staffers and former Trump campaign officials who are likely to be interviewed by the FBI.

Here are the known meetings of Kushner with Russian officials since his father-in-law was elected.

Meeting the ambassador

Kushner's name is on the list of Trump team members who met with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the transition between Trump's election victory and his inauguration. Kushner and Michael Flynn, who would go on to become Trump's first national security adviser, met with Kislyak together in Trump Tower in December.

The subject matter discussed during the meeting remains unclear.

"They generally discussed the [U.S.-Russia] relationship, and it made sense to establish a line of communication," White House spokeswoman Hope Hicks said in a statement in March after the meeting was first publicly disclosed. "Jared has had meetings with many other foreign countries and representatives — as many as two dozen other foreign countries' leaders and representatives."

Other Trump associates who met with Kislyak before the inauguration include then-Sen. Jeff Sessions, now U.S. attorney general, and former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page.

Trump himself met with Kislyak and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the Oval Office on May 10 -- a meeting that raised questions afterward when it was revealed that the president disclosed classified information about ISIS to the Russian officials. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, current National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell were also present in the meeting

Kushner's meeting with Russian banker

Separately, the White House confirmed that in December, Kushner met with Sergei Gorkov of Russian bank Vnesheconombank, or VEB, at the suggestion of the Russian ambassador.

A senior White House official said the conversation was "general and inconsequential" and that Kushner took the meeting as part of his campaign role of interfacing with foreign dignitaries. But the bank described the discussion to ABC News as a "negotiation" in which "the parties discussed the business practices applied by foreign development banks, as well as most promising business lines and sectors."

The December meeting, which like Kushner's meeting with Kislyak came to light in March, happened as Kushner Companies, the real estate firm of Jared Kushner's family, was engaged in what has been described in public statements as "active, advanced negotiations ... with a number of potential investors" about the redevelopment of a skyscraper the company owns at 666 Fifth Avenue in New York City.

To date, neither Kushner nor the family real estate firm has commented on the meeting with VEB. An official representing the Kushner firm responded to questions from ABC News on March 29, saying that Kushner was the only executive from his family's real estate firm to attend.

"VEB is not providing financing, lending or any other services to Kushner Companies," the official said.

In the wake of the revelations in March of Kushner's meetings, a senior administration official confirmed that Kushner has volunteered to speak with the Senate Intelligence Committee as part of its inquiry into ties between Trump associates and Russia.

His role in the administration

Kushner in addition to being a senior adviser to the president was also named to head the new White House Office of American Innovation.

That is one of his more formal and visible roles, but he also has unofficial duties that are no less important, including helping to represent the administration in meetings with foreign leaders and serving as a point of contact for those trying to get a message through to the president.

Kushner was invited by Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to visit Iraq in April for an on-the-ground update on the fight against ISIS.

And the interest that Kushner, a practicing Orthodox Jew, has in brokering peace in the Middle East is widely known.

At an event for Republican donors and supporters the night before the inauguration, Trump publicly addressed Kushner in his remarks, saying, "If you can't produce peace in the Middle East, nobody can."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also highlighted his longstanding ties and familiarity with Kushner when he visited the White House in February.

"Can I reveal, Jared, how long we’ve known you?" Netanyahu said while addressing Kushner, who was seated in the front row at the gathering.

"Well, he was never small. He was always big. He was always tall," Netanyahu said, alluding to Kushner's height even as a child.

"But I’ve known the president and I’ve known his family and his team for a long time, and there is no greater supporter of the Jewish people and the Jewish state than President Donald Trump," the Israeli leader concluded.

Kushner's apparent influence in the White House may stem from his close relationship with his father-in-law. Kushner was a part of the delegation that traveled with Trump this week on his first foreign trip as president. And perhaps because of his being a member of the president's immediate family, Kushner is included in some meetings that may be closed to other Trump associates, the most recent example being the audience with the pope at the Vatican.

In the U.S., Kushner is constantly spotted in the Oval Office and joins Trump on his frequent weekend trips to the president’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

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MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- With the world’s spotlight fixed on President Trump during his first trip abroad, every handshake, thumbs-up, smile, and shove has been analyzed by viewers around the world.

For his part, Trump has shown an awareness about the importance of adhering to foreign customs. While touring Murabba Palace in Saudi Arabia, Trump turned to King Salman while enjoying a pastry and tea to ask, “Always use the right hand, right? Always use the right.” In Islam, eating or greeting with the left hand can be interpreted as disrespectful.

But while Trump appears to have avoided any serious errors in following local customs during his travels, he has come under scrutiny for sometimes awkward or forceful body language that could send mixed messages to an international community eager to understand the new U.S. president and how his “America First” policies will impact other countries.

From handshakes to hand swats, here are the top four awkward body language moments from Trump’s first trip abroad.

First Lady Melania Trump swats away President Trump’s hand

Upon disembarking from Air Force One in Israel, President Trump reached for First Lady Melania Trump’s hand as they made their way down the red carpet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, Sara. But the first lady appeared to swat Trump’s hand away in an awkward moment that was widely interpreted as a show of tension between the president and his wife. Aside from that moment of possible chilliness, the two were seen holding hands throughout their trip.

French President Emmanuel Macron asserts his political power with white-knuckled handshake

Pres. Trump and newly elected French Pres. Macron cap first meeting with lengthy handshake. https://t.co/TCs7dPeocQ pic.twitter.com/Y5WWYyncVd

— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) May 25, 2017

Before heading to NATO meetings in Brussels, President Trump and the newly elected president of France, Emmanuel Macron, engaged in a jaw-clenching, white-knuckled handshake that lasted almost six seconds. Trump tried to pull his hand away, but the young French president persisted, perhaps in an effort to assert his political power.

President Macron appears to swerve away from President Trump

À Bruxelles, unis avec nos alliés de @NATO. pic.twitter.com/7nyaoI8hki

— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) May 25, 2017

Later in the day, Macron met with NATO members on the red carpet as the group gathered for a special ceremony for the unveiling of the Article 5 and Berlin Wall memorials at NATO headquarters. But as Macron approached the other leaders, he appeared to swerve away from Trump to instead embrace German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Trump stood by waiting for his opportunity to greet the French president, and when the two shook hands again, it was equally forceful. Trump pulled Macron's hand close, and Macron laughed as he patted Trump on the arm.

President Trump pushes Montenegro’s prime minister out of the way at NATO Summit

Trump met with backlash after he pushed Prime Minister Dusko Markovic out of the way as NATO leaders gathered for a group photo.

Trump grabbed the right arm of a surprised Markovic before pushing his way to the front of the group. The moment went viral and was met by criticism online from people who saw the move as undiplomatic.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer explained to reporters that the standing order at the photo was predetermined.

The leader of the United States typically stands at the front and center of the so-called “family photos," and in the past, President Obama has been in the front row.

Shortly before the photo was taken, Trump had scolded NATO leaders he thought had been falling short of meeting the financial obligations of member states.

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David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images(WELLESLEY, Mass.) — Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, who has shied away from the spotlight until recently, delivered a stinging rebuke of President Donald Trump’s behavior and policies on Friday, despite not mentioning him by name.

Under a tent in the rain, Clinton delivered the 2017 commencement address at her alma mater, Wellesley College.

Clinton was met by cheers and applause when she made an indirect comparison between former President Richard Nixon and Trump.

“We were furious about the past presidential election of a man whose presidency would eventually end in disgrace with his impeachment for obstruction of justice after firing the person running the investigation into him at the Department of Justice,” said Clinton, referring to the outrage her generation felt toward Nixon's presidency.

“But here is what I want you to know: We got through that time, and we started to thrive as our society changed laws and opened the circle of opportunity and rights wider and wider for more Americans,” she added.

Clinton, whose losing 2016 presidential campaign was the target of Russian hacking, told the 2017 graduates they face “a full-fledged assault on truth and reason.”

“Just log on, just log onto social media for 10 seconds, it will hit you right in the face,” said Clinton. “People denying science. Concocting elaborate hurtful conspiracy theories about child abuse rings in pizza parlors, undocumented fears about immigrants, Muslims, minorities, the poor.”

Clinton called the budget proposed by the Trump administration "a con."

"Look at the budget that was just proposed in Washington," said Clinton. "It is an attack of unimaginable cruelty on the most vulnerable among us -- the youngest, oldest, poorest, and hard-working people that need a little help to gain or hang on to a decent middle-class life. It grossly underfunds mental health and an attempt to combat the opioid epidemic. It puts our nation at risk. And to top it off, it is shrouded in a trillion-dollar mathematical lie. Let's call it what it is. It is a con."

She also talked about how she has spent her time out of the public eye and what has helped her get over her election defeat.

“You may have heard that things didn't exactly go the way I planned,” said Clinton. “But you know what? I'm doing OK. I’ve gotten to spend time with my family, especially my amazing grandchildren.”

Clinton joked that long walks in the woods and organizing her closets have helped her move on, and added, “I won’t lie, Chardonnay helped a little too.”

Earlier this month, Clinton announced she is launching “Onward Together,” a political action group aimed at encouraging people to run for office. “More than ever, I believe citizen engagement is vital to our democracy. I'm so inspired by everyone stepping up to organize and lead,” Clinton tweeted.

Clinton gave the college’s first-ever student graduation speech in 1969, and returned in 1992 to deliver the commencement address when she was the first lady of Arkansas and wife of then-Democratic presidential candidate Bill Clinton.

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Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- President Donald Trump’s views on the Paris climate agreement are “evolving,” his chief economic adviser Gary Cohn told reporters Friday.

“He came here to learn,” Cohn said. “So his views are evolving, which is exactly what they should be.”

The president’s national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, then chimed in to say that the president’s decision about whether to remain in the agreement would ultimately be based what’s best for the United States; Cohn concurred.

“The basis for the decision is ultimately going to be what’s best for the United States,” Cohn said.

The future of the United States’ involvement in the landmark agreement, which the president repeatedly criticized as a candidate, has been a sticking point at the ongoing summit, with the Italian prime minister pointing to it as an "open question" at the day's conclusion.

“There is one open question, which is the U.S. position on the Paris climate accords. … All others have confirmed their total agreement on the accord,” Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni said at the end of the first day’s session. “We are sure that after an internal reflection, the United States will also want to commit to it.”

The president is not expected to make a final decision on the accord until after he returns home. But Cohn indicated earlier Friday that the president was growing more attuned to the European stance on the issue.

"I think he is leaning to understand the European position,” Cohn said when asked which way the president was leaning. “Look as you know from the U.S. there's very strong views on both sides.”

In addition to getting pushed on the topic at the G7 summit, the president also got an earful at the Vatican, where the pope presented the president with one of his writings on the environment and the Cardinal secretary of state further raised the issue during a bilateral meeting.

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- A White House adviser is clearing up comments made by President Donald Trump that "the Germans are bad, very bad."

German publication Der Spiegel reported that Trump “voiced significant displeasure” about Germany’s trade surplus during a meeting with European Union leaders in Brussels, Belgium.

On Friday morning in Taormina, Sicily, the site of a meeting with G7 leaders, White House chief economic adviser Gary Cohn said Trump’s comments were about trade.

"He said they're very bad on trade but he doesn't have a problem with Germany,” said Cohn. “He said his dad is from Germany. He said, 'I don't have a problem with Germany, I have a problem with German trade.'"

Trump has taken aim at the German car industry in the past. In an interview with German newspaper Bild, Trump described trade between the two countries as “out of balance.”

“If you go down Fifth Avenue everyone has a Mercedes-Benz in front of his house, isn’t that the case?” said Trump. “The fact is that … there is no reciprocity. How many Chevrolets do you see in Germany? Not very many, maybe none at all it’s a one-way street. It must work both ways.”

Cohn also addressed Trump’s position on the Paris climate accord. G7 leaders have expressed concern over the United States potentially pulling out of the international agreement and setting back efforts to mitigate climate change.

Cohn said the president will be listening to concerns from European leaders.

"I think he's learning to understanding the European position,” said Cohn. “Look, as you know from the U.S., there's very strong views on both sides. Both sides are running ads. So he knows that in the U.S., there's very strong opinions on both sides but he also knows that Paris has important meaning to many of the European leaders. And he wants to clearly hear what the European leaders have to say."

Trump is still deciding whether or not the U.S. will stay in the agreement. On Thursday, 22 Senate Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., sent a letter to the White House urging the president to pull out of the deal, citing concerns about jobs.

But even in the White House, Trump has been faced with two sides of the debate. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, former chief executive of Exxon, supports the deal while Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt disagrees.

Pope Francis nudged Trump about climate change during their meeting at the Vatican this week. As a gift, the Pope presented Trump with his 2015 encyclical "Laudato Si," which calls for global action on the issue.

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Mark Wilson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Contacts between Russian officials and Jared Kushner, son-in-law of President Donald Trump and one of his senior advisers, are a focus of the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, sources tell ABC News.

While Kushner is not a target of FBI investigation and has not been accused of committing a crime, sources said he is among a number of White House staffers and former Trump campaign officials who are likely to be interviewed by the FBI because of their interactions with former national security adviser Michael Flynn -- or because they had contact with Russian officials during the campaign or the transition.

Of particular interest is Kushner's participation in a meeting with Russia's Ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak in December and a separate meeting with a Russian financial executive with a bank that had been subject to U.S. sanctions, sources said. Both contacts have been previously reported and the White House has denied that they were inappropriate.

The sources told ABC News that Kushner has not yet been contacted by the FBI and has not been asked to turn over any documents.

"We don't know anything," a source close to Kushner told ABC News. "He hasn't been approached."

"Mr. Kushner previously volunteered to share with Congress what he knows about these meetings. He will do the same if he is contacted in connection with any other inquiry," Kushner's lawyer, Jamie Gorelick, said in a statement obtained by ABC News.

The Democratic National Committee on Thursday night called for Kushner's security clearance to be suspended until the FBI has completed its investigation.

“The FBI’s Russia investigation reached Trump’s backyard, and now it’s in his house," the statement read. "Kushner’s security clearance should be suspended until the FBI’s findings are complete.”

Last week, ABC News confirmed that the FBI's inquiry had extended to at least one current White House staffer.

The White House provided a statement at the time in response to a Washington Post report on that matter, denying any collusion between associates of the president and Russia.

"As the president has stated before -- a thorough investigation will confirm that there was no collusion between the campaign and any foreign entity," said press secretary Sean Spicer in the statement.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, is renewing his request for documents pertaining to former FBI Director James Comey.

The FBI responded to Chaffetz in a letter Thursday citing Robert Mueller’s appointment as special counsel in the bureau’s investigation of Russia as justification to delay fulfilling the committee’s request.

"In light of this development and other considerations, we are undertaking appropriate consultation to ensure all relevant interests implicated by your request are properly evaluated," wrote Gregory Brower, assistant director of the FBI’s Office of Congressional Affairs.

Chaffetz responded to Brower’s letter, emphasizing his panel "has its own, Constitutionally-based prerogative to conduct investigations” and that it’s not his intent to "impede or interfere" with Mueller’s investigation.

"In fact, the Committee's investigation will complement the work of the Special Counsel. Whereas the Special Counsel is conducting a criminal or counterintelligence investigation that will occur largely behind closed doors, the Committee's work will shed light on matters of high public interest, regardless of whether there is evidence of criminal conduct," Chaffetz wrote.

"In this case, the focus of the Committee's investigation is the independence of the FBI, including conversations between the President and Comey and the process by which Comey was removed from his role as director," he continued. "The records being withheld are central to those questions, even more so in light of Comey's decision not to testify before the Committee at this time."

Chaffetz makes a new request for documents “outside the scope” of Mueller’s investigation “as soon as possible, but no later than June 8, 2017.”

Those documents include all memoranda, notes, summaries, and recordings referring or relating to any communication between Comey and any White House employee, including the president and the vice president, ranging back to Comey's first day in September 2013, as well as between Comey and the attorney general or deputy attorney general.

Chaffetz further requests that the FBI identify all responsive documents, regardless of whether the document is within the scope of the special counsel's investigation.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- A federal appeals court upheld Thursday a lower court's temporary block of key provisions of President Donald Trump's revised executive order banning travel from some Middle East and African countries.

In the decision, Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Chief Judge Roger Gregory writes that the executive order "in text speaks with vague words of national security, but in context drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination." The opinion continues that while the president has power to limit entry to the country, "that power is not absolute."

"It cannot go unchecked when, as here, the President wields it through an executive edict that stands to cause irreparable harm to individuals across this nation," Gregory writes.

Trump's order was his second attempt to limit immigration and travel to the United States. In February, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals denied a bid for an emergency stay from the Department of Justice in response to a Washington state federal judge's temporary restraining order blocking the president's original order.

In March, Trump issued the revised order which he would later call a "watered-down" version of the first. Trump's and his associates' comments about their desire to prevent Muslims from entering the country during the presidential campaign were highlighted in rulings by federal judges in Hawaii and Maryland blocking the latest attempt. The government argued that the order was not intended to discriminate on the basis of religion.

Both the White House and Department of Justice released statements critical of the decision Thursday, with Attorney General Jeff Sessions pledging that his department "will seek review of this case in the United States Supreme Court."

"This Department of Justice will continue to vigorously defend the power and duty of the Executive Branch to protect the people of this country from danger," read the department's statement.

The White House wrote that the country needs "every available tool at our disposal to prevent terrorists from entering the United States and committing acts of bloodshed and violence."

"As Judge Shedd's dissent notes, 'the real losers in this case are the millions of individual Americans whose security is threatened on a daily basis by those who seek to do us harm,'" the White House statement continued. "We are confident the President's executive order to protect the country is fully lawful and ultimately will be upheld by the Judiciary."

The appellate court took the deepest dive yet into the issue of whether statements made by candidate Trump should be considered in evaluating the executive order he issued after he became president.

"The campaign statements here are probative of purpose because they are closely related in time, attributable to the primary decision maker, and specific and easily connected to the challenged action," read the majority opinion.

"In this highly unique set of circumstances, there is a direct link between the President’s numerous campaign statements promising a Muslim ban that targets territories, the discrete action he took only one week into office executing that exact plan," the opinion added.

"These statements, taken together, provide direct, specific evidence of what motivated both [the original and revised travel bans]: President Trump’s desire to exclude Muslims from the United States," wrote Gregory. "We need not probe anyone's heart of hearts to discover the purpose of [the order], for President Trump and his aides have explained it on numerous occasions and in no uncertain terms."

The judges found that the Trump administration's alleged intent to discriminate against Muslims could violate the Establishment Clause of the Constitution, which prohibits the government from favoring one religion over another.

The court's opinion additionally found that the government's national security justifications for parts of the ban inadequate. The travel ban's "text does little to bolster any national security rationale: the only examples it provides of immigrants born abroad and convicted of terrorism-related crimes in the United States include two Iraqis," even though Iraq is no longer a designated country under the ban, and "a Somalian refugee who entered the United States as a child and was radicalized here as an adult," Gregory wrote.

The panel further examined the travel ban's impact on plaintiffs who are Muslim Americans or permanent U.S. residents. An unnamed "John Doe" plaintiff has applied for a spousal immigration visa for his wife, an Iranian national. He is “feeling the direct, painful effects of the Second Executive Order—both its alleged message of religious condemnation and the prolonged separation it causes between him and his wife—in his everyday life,” the decision stated.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Journalists and politicians are speaking out about the treatment of the press following the alleged assault of a political reporter at the hands of the Republican candidate in Montana's congressional special election -- though not all are in agreement and some appeared split along partisan lines.

Greg Gianforte was charged with misdemeanor assault Wednesday after Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs said the GOP candidate body slammed him to the ground. Jacobs said he was attempting to ask the congressional candidate a question about his response to the Congressional Budget Office's analysis of the American Health Care Act.

The Radio Television Digital News Association released a statement condemning the incident on Thursday morning.

"If the criminal charges are proven true, this would be an outrageous escalation of the recent trend toward elected officials and those seeking elected office obstructing and even, now, assaulting reporters who are merely trying to do their jobs,” said Dan Shelley, the incoming executive director of the RTDNA in the statement.

The Committee to Protect Journalists, an organization that advocates for press freedom around the world, said that the incident "sends an unacceptable signal that physical assault is an appropriate response to unwanted questioning by a journalist," in a release.

 The U.S. editor of Jacob's employer, The Guardian, put out a statement Wednesday evening expressing support Jacobs.

"The Guardian is deeply appalled by how our reporter, Ben Jacobs, was treated in the course of doing his job as a journalist while reporting on the Montana special election," said the editor, Lee Glendinning. "We are committed to holding power to account and we stand by Ben Jacobs and our team of reporters for the questions they ask and the reporting that is produced."

Vice News, which works with The Guardian on segments for its television program, "Vice News Tonight," also released a statement.

"Vice News joins our partners at The Guardian in condemning the attack on journalist Ben Jacobs. It’s controversial, we know, to oppose violence against a person asking a question of a candidate for public office, but apparently that’s where we are. For any public official who wishes to live in a scrutiny free society we have one word of advice: move."

Conservative media personalities and some Republican politicians downplayed the incident.

Laura Ingraham, a conservative commentator and the editor-in-chief of the website LifeZette, wrote on Twitter, "Did anyone get his lunch money stolen today and then run to tell the recess monitor?"

 Derek Hunter, a radio host in Baltimore and contributing editor to the Daily Caller downplayed the incident at first before later tweeting that "it sounds bad" after reading the accounts of witnesses.

"What kind of a wuss files charges over broken glasses? Someone who wants to influence an outcome, that's who," tweeted Hunter in the aftermath

 On Capitol Hill, a number of representatives condemned Gianforte's behavior while still backing the candidate.

"I believe that we should all treat the press with respect and I try to lead by example," said Rep. Leonard Lance, R-N.J. "I, of course, hope the Republican is successful today because I think his views are the views of the people of Montana."

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif. offered a mixed response on the incident to an Associated Press reporter.

"It’s not appropriate behavior," said Hunter. "Unless the reporter deserved it."

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