By Carol E. Lee and Damian Paletta

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump defended as highly effective his tenure so far in the White House, which has been marked by legal fights, West Wing power struggles, confrontations with U.S. allies, the withdrawal of one of his cabinet nominees and the firing of his national security adviser after he misled administration officials about his contacts with Russia.

"I turn on the TV, I open the newspaper and I see stories of chaos. Chaos," Mr. Trump said at a news conference on Thursday. "And it's the opposite. This administration is running like a fine-tuned machine."

Mr. Trump's lengthy defense comes as he nears the one-month mark of his time in office, when he is under renewed scrutiny about his ties to Russia and amid an escalating feud between his White House and U.S. intelligence officials.

"I own nothing in Russia. I have no loans in Russia," Mr. Trump said.

(More to Come.)

Write to Carol E. Lee at and Damian Paletta at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 16, 2017 14:28 ET (19:28 GMT)

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