President Donald Trump at a rally Thursday night said the story of his campaign's collusion with Russia is "a total fabrication."
Appearing in Huntington, W.Va., Trump said that Democrats only care about Russia because they are bitter about Hillary Clinton's defeat in the 2016 election.
"The Russia story is a total fabrication," he said. "It's just an excuse for the greatest loss in the history of American politics. That's all it is."
Trump said that the Russia story makes Democrats "feel better," and repeated his call for investigating Clinton's private email server.
"It just makes them feel better when they have nothing else to talk about," he said. "What the prosecutors should be looking at are Hillary Clinton's 33,000 deleted emails."
The crowd then chanted "Lock her up," a common refrain on the campaign trail.
Trump credited his audience with the win, rather than Russians.
"Most people know there were no Russians in our campaign," he said. "There never were. We didn't win because of Russia. We won because of you."
His comments come as news broke that special counsel Robert Mueller has impaneled a grand jury in the Russia probe. Trump did not address Mueller in his speech.