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What's Really Happening In The Schumer/Putin Viral Image (Photo)

| by Lauren Briggs

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York responded to President Donald Trump on March 3 after Trump posted a photo of Schumer and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Twitter.

"Happily talk re: my contact w Mr. Putin & his associates, took place in '03 in full view of press & public under oath," Schumer wrote to the president in a series of tweets. "Would you [and] your team? And for the record, they were Krispy Kreme donuts."

Schumer's comments came after Trump tweeted the image of Putin and Schumer after it made the rounds earlier in the day on Trump's director of social media Dan Scavino Jr.'s Twitter page, as well as on websites like The Gateway Pundit and Infowars.

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"We should start an immediate investigation into [Schumer] and his ties to Russia and Putin," Trump tweeted. "A total hypocrite!"

Scavino tweeted the photo in response to an earlier post from Schumer that read, "The bottom line is we have an obligation to get to the truth. We must evaluate the scope of Russia’s interference in our election."

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USA Today reports that the photo was taken in 2003, when Putin visited New York City during Schumer's first term in the Senate. The pair attended a Lukoil gas station opening in Manhattan before discussing relations between the U.S. and Russia.

Schumer called for an investigation into Attorney General Jeff Sessions' connections to Russia after news broke that he spoke with a Russian ambassador on at least two separate occasions in 2016 and did not disclose that information to the Senate Judiciary Committee when they questioned the nominee during his confirmation hearing.

"The problem is that Sessions lied to the [Senate] Judiciary Committee about it, and is in charge of the investigation into contacts between the two sides, to which Sessions has ties," Schumer told USA Today in an email.

Sessions and the White House have both reiterated their stance that the former Armed Services Committee member did nothing wrong and did not disclose the information because he did not find it pertinent to the questioning, since he met with the official as a senator and not a Trump campaign worker, notes The Washington Post.

"I'm not aware of any of those activities," Sessions said during the hearing when asked about potential contact between Trump's campaign and Russia, according to The Washington Post. "I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians."

Sources: USA Today, Washington PostDonald Trump/Twitter, Chuck Schumer/Twitter, Dan Scavino/Twitter / Photo Credit: Center For American Progress Action Fund/Flickr

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