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After a particularly head-scratching comment by President Donald Trump during Thursday's press conference, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders is now backtracking those sentiments.

Sanders said, via an email to The New York Times, that Trump was “being sarcastic” when he thanked Russia President Vladimir Putin for cutting U.S. diplomatic staff in Russia.

“I want to thank him because we’re trying to cut down on payroll,” Trump said Thursday at his Westminster N.J. golf club. “And as far as I’m concerned, I’m very thankful that he let go of a large number of people because now we have a smaller payroll. There’s no real reason for them to go back.”

“So I greatly appreciate the fact that they’ve been able to cut our payroll for the United States,” the president continued. "We’ll save a lot of money.”

Putin announced last month that upward of 775 U.S. mission staff would be expelled from Russia. This move was in response to new Russian sanctions that were passed overwhelmingly by Congress and were signed into law by Trump.

View Comments(9 comments)
Anonymous(2 likes)I literally laughed out loud when I saw him say that.  Trump has a sense of humor, but it is dry and not very many people "get" that kind of humor.  For many, humor has to be easy...obvious...handed to them on a platter, or they don't get it and take offense.  Maybe Trump should wink when he makes a joke...not that they would understand a wink either.  
IntegrityImportant(2 likes)The biased MSM takes comments like this one by POTUS which clearly is sarcasim and uses those comments as another excuse to dump on Trump. What needs to happen is that every Sen/Cong who supported the new Russian sanctions need to be voted out of office. It has been pointed out from the get-go that basing foreign policy with any country but especially with one as large as Russia on blame for losing an election is just stupid. And beyond the pale for those one would hope would have a sliver of intellect. To repeat since the dense folks aren't getting it, most advanced countries monitor elections (THINK how far Obama went to interefer in Israel's election). Monitoring is not interferring and Trump did not win because of Russia. hillary didn't LOSE because of Russia either. She lost because she's a pathetic dem like so many other dems these days: think Schumer, Pelosi, Maxine the Mouth!
@EloiseSheppard To repeat since the dense folks aren't getting it, most advanced countries monitor elections (THINK how far Obama went to interefer in Israel's election). Monitoring is not interferring and Trump did not win because of Russia. hillary didn't LOSE because of Russia either. She lost because she's a pathetic dem like so many other dems these days: think Schumer, Pelosi, Maxine the Mouth!