President Donald Trump speaks with reporters before departing the White House for a trip to Asia, Friday, Nov. 3, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
Theresa Seiger, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
President Donald Trump on Friday told reporters that he doesn’t “remember much” about a March meeting with then-campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, who pleaded guilty earlier this month to lying to the FBI about his contacts with people he believed to be close to Russian officials.
“I don't remember much about that meeting,” Trump told reporters at the White House ahead of a trip to Asia. “It was a very unimportant meeting, took place a long time (ago).”
The meeting, which took place March 31, was attended by then Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, who now serves as U.S. attorney general, and J.D. Gordon, a Trump adviser and former Pentagon official, according to The Washington Post.
Gordon told CNN that Trump “heard (Papadopoulos) out” when he offered to set up the meeting. He told the Post that Sessions “shut him down.”
“It was a bad idea and the senator didn't want people to speak about it again,” Gordon told the newspaper.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at a news briefing earlier this week that she did not believe Trump recalled the March meeting.
The president boasted last week that he has "one of the great memories of all time" while defending his recollection of a call between himself and the widow of a U.S. Army soldier killed in an ambush in Niger. He has faced heavy criticism after Sgt. La David Johnson's widow, Myeshia Johnson, said the president told her that her husband “knew what he signed up for.”