He could have said what needed saying about election interference in five sentences.
I discussed election interference with Mr. Putin. I will not discuss what was said. But let’s ask ourselves: if Russia interfered, what was the goal? It would have been to upset us, get attention, make us quarrel with each other. I won’t rise to that bait. But I will say this: if it ever happens again, this isn’t the Obama administration and the reaction will not be like the Obama administration’s.
One additional point: Putin may well wish to tone down the quarrel with the U.S. at this moment. He has just won re-election to another term. And a principal reason for expressing hostility to the U.S. has been for domestic electoral purposes. He is also less worried that Ukraine will be turned against Russia or invited to join NATO, which he thought Hillary Clinton and Obama were attempting to do.