Updated at 7:55 p.m. ET
President Trump said Wednesday he is willing to be interviewed under oath by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible collusion with Trump’s campaign.
In an impromptu meeting with reporters, Trump said he is “looking forward” to talking with Mueller. “I would love to do it,” he said, going on to say he “would do it under oath.” Trump added he would take his lawyers’ advice.
Trump has given conflicting answers as to whether he would agree to a potential interview with Mueller. In June, the president said he was “100 percent” willing to do so. But during a news conference earlier this month, when asked about reports that the special counsel planned to seek such an interview, Trump dodged the question.
Mueller has indicted multiple former associates of the president, including his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and former White House national security adviser Michael Flynn has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations he had with the Russian ambassador.
Trump maintained on Wednesday there was “no collusion” between his campaign and the Russians, but he added that he “couldn’t have cared less about Russians having to do with my campaign,” calling himself “one of the greatest candidates” and “much better” than 2016 rival Hillary Clinton. The U.S. intelligence community has concluded that Russia attempted to tip the scales in favor of Trump.
The president made the comments just before departing for the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
The special counsel is also thought to be probing whether Trump sought to interfere with the Justice Department’s Russia investigation. Mueller’s appointment came after the president abruptly fired then-FBI Director James Comey last year.
The Washington Post reported Tuesday that after firing Comey, Trump summoned then-acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe to the Oval Office for a meeting, where the president asked McCabe whom he voted for in the 2016 presidential election. McCabe said he did not vote, “several current and former U.S. officials” told the Post.
Trump said on Wednesday that he didn’t recall asking McCabe about his voting record and called it a “very unimportant question.”
Trump also elaborated on his immigration plan that the White House is expected to unveil on Monday, ahead of his State of the Union address on Tuesday. He said his plan would offer a path to citizenship for recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program over a period of 10 to 12 years. The Obama-era program shielded from deportation undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.
Congress is trying to come up with a compromise on the DACA program, which Trump set to expire in March. The issue became a wedge in last week’s budget negotiations that resulted in a three-day government shutdown.
The DACA program is slated to end on March 5, but Trump said that those protected by it should “not be concerned” about possibly being deported.
Trump also said he wants $25 billion to build his border wall, which he touted repeatedly during the campaign, along with $5 billion for other security measures.