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Trump Claims Media, Not Russia Influenced Election

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Reiterating his claim that Russian meddling in last year's election is a hoax, President Donald Trump has argued that the biggest influence on the election came from the media.

Trump seemed to suggest in a post on Twitter on Friday that his victory in the presidential election came despite the media's full-throated support for Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

"The Russia hoax continues, now it's ads on Facebook. What about the totally biased and dishonest Media coverage in favor of Crooked Hillary?" Trump tweeted.

He added, "The greatest influence over our election was the Fake News Media 'screaming' for Crooked Hillary Clinton. Next, she was a bad candidate!"

The tweets by Trump came after Facebook (FB) announced Thursday it has agreed to release advertisements purchased by Russians in an effort to influence last year's election to congressional investigators.

A statement from Facebook General Counsel Colin Stretch noted the social media giant found more than 3,000 ads addressing social and political issues that appear to have come from accounts associated with a Russian entity known as the Internet Research Agency.

Stretch said Facebook previously agreed to provide information related to those ads to Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

"Since then, some people have asked why we aren't sharing the content of the ads more broadly," Stretch said, "After an extensive legal and policy review, today we are announcing that we will also share these ads with congressional investigators."

He added, "We believe it is vitally important that government authorities have the information they need to deliver to the public a full assessment of what happened in the 2016 election."

Stretch called the decision to release the content of the ads difficult but said Facebook concluded sharing the information can help provide a full accounting of what happened in the election.

The move by Facebook comes amid the ongoing investigation of Russian efforts to influence the election and possible collusion with Trump's campaign.

(Photo: Gage Skidmore)

by RTT Staff Writer

For comments and feedback: editorial@rttnews.com

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