The lights go out as President Donald Trump, center, accompanied by House Ways and Means Committee chairman Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, left, and Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., right, speaks in the Cabinet room of the White House, Tuesday, July 17, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Lights go out during Trump statement at the White House

July 17, 2018 - 4:01 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump wanted to make an important point. And then the lights went out.

Trump was saying Tuesday that he has "full faith" in the U.S. intelligence agencies in the aftermath of his Helsinki news conference when the lights in the White House Cabinet Room dimmed and briefly went out, leaving the room mostly in darkness.

"Whoops, they just turned off the lights. That must be the intelligence agencies," the president joked to members of his Cabinet, lawmakers and the assembled media.

As the lights were quickly switched on, Trump asked if everyone was OK. "That was strange. But that's OK," he said, returning to his statement.

Trump was trying to make clear after his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin that he fully supports the U.S intelligence community and its finding that Russia interfered in the 2016 elections.

His remarks came during a meeting with Vice President Mike Pence, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and several members of Congress, including Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas. The president was discussing Republican tax legislation that's expected to be considered in September.

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