Former President Donald Trump told Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit in 2019 that he is going to act “tough” in front of the cameras, according to the new book by a top former White House staffer.

“Ok, I’m going to act a little tougher with you for a few minutes,” Trump told Putin in Osaka in 2019. “But it’s for the cameras, and after they leave, we’ll talk. You understand.”

The new book, I Will Take Your Questions Now, was written by former White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham.

According to Grisham, Trump also jokingly told Putin that day they should “get rid” of journalists who report “fake news.”

Throughout Trump’s presidency, his relationship with the Russian president has been frequently questioned and investigated, eventually leading to Special Counsel Robert Muller investigating Russian election interference in the 2016 election.

The Muller probe lasted about two years, although it did not find definitive evidence of Trump campaign collusion. 

Trump repeatedly tried to disrupt Muller’s investigation throughout its two years, even telling then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions to stop the investigation.

“This is a terrible situation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, before it continues to stain our country any further. Bob Mueller is totally conflicted, and his 17 Angry Democrats that are doing his dirty work are a disgrace to USA!” Trump tweeted back in 2018, before his Twitter account was permanently suspended.

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