White House press secretary Sarah Sanders celebrated the findings of the Russia investigation Monday, saying "it's a great day for America," while also echoing President Donald Trump's claim of exoneration following the release of a summary of special counsel Robert Mueller's report by Attorney General William Barr.
"To be clear, I think it's a day America's looked forward to for a long time. It's a great day for America when a decision like this comes forward. And frankly, it's a great thing that we can move back -- that the media and everyone can focus on ... the things that the President's been focusing on the last two years," Sanders told CNN's John Berman on "New Day."
On Sunday, Barr said in a letter to Congress that Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election did not find that the Trump campaign conspired with Russia. Barr also said based on the findings of the investigation, he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein determined there was not enough evidence to prosecute the President for obstruction of justice.
Following the release of Barr's letter, Trump claimed "complete and total exoneration," and asserted that the investigation was an "illegal takedown that failed," sentiments Sanders appeared to echo with Monday.
"They found that absolutely no American citizen, including the President, including everyone on his team, had anything to do with interfering in the election in 2016. It was another great reminder that the reason that the President is the President and sitting behind me right now is because he was the best candidate, he had the best message, he had the best vision for the country and he outworked his opponent," she said.
Asked by Berman if she agrees with Trump's characterization of the investigation as an "illegal takedown that failed," Sanders sided with her boss.
"I don't disagree with him, he's 100% right. These are people that tried to overthrow the President of the United States," she said, later clarifying that she meant "Democrats and the media" were the ones attempting to bring down Trump's presidency.
Sanders, who was interviewed by the special counsel's office last year, also criticized Democrats for "lying to the American people" when they accused, without evidence, she said, Trump of colluding with Russians to influence the election.
"They claimed to have actual evidence. They said it was true and they lied. They didn't just lie on TV, they lied to the American people. And they tried to take something away from the 63 million Americans that voted for this president," she said. "And I hope that they will stand up and say how wrong they were throughout this process."